H&M Fashion Against AIDS: Fab Festival Collection!

H&M’s latest Fashion Against AIDS campaign launches on Thursday (20th…get your diaries out!!!) with a fabulous festival-themed collection. Boho meets rock chick in denim hot-pants, patterned leggings and hippy tunics for the girls, and for the guys indie-band-styling gets a lived-in makeover with preppy blazers, military detailing, patchy denim and the ubiquitous Doherty hat…


With the whole festival experience covered (except the beer…and the bug spray) and with 25% of sales being donated to HIV/AIDS awareness projects, it would be rude – nay – a crime against the fundamental principles of morality not to at least pop in for a browse…

Oh! Almost forgot those necessary accoutrements; tents, sleeping bags, fold-away chairs…yes, H&M have covered all the bases like a fabulously fashionable festival fairy godmother…kudos!!

To check out the rest of the collection head over to H&M’s Facebook page or to their Fashion Against AIDS site (which also has lots of nifty survival tips for the rookies and giggleworthy videos from festivals-past to get you in the mood).

All I need now is a ticket…

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Jump into Jumpsuits

The jumpsuit is officially back in (in case you hadn’t noticed already) and judging by the a/w 2010 runways it’s going nowhere fast. So, how – you may very well be asking – do you rock what is essentially an oversized romper suit without, a) looking like you’ve taken style advice from Astro Boy (never a good plan), or b) are a member [real or imaginary] of an elite care-in-the-community Bio-Hazard squad – like this guy…

(Muchas gracias to @millyglaister for this particular gem…pure visual poetry)

French Connection s/s 2010

I must admit, I have been wrestling with the jumpsuit question for a while, that and the obvious inconveniences posed by a full body garment. Need the loo anyone? In the comfort of your own home getting butt naked in the privy would prove no real problem but consider, if you will, the inherent dangers involved once you enter the public domain. What if (Mother of God please protect me from this eventuality) you get caught short on the train, more specifically on a Virgin train: you know, the ones with the slow reveal virtually-impossible-to-lock doors? Forget Freddy Krueger, THIS is what nightmares are made of.

H&M s/s 2010

Missoni s/s 2010

And who could forget our old friend VPL, gloriously enhanced by this season’s penchant for glossy, silky, clingy fabrics. Solution? Commando (I know, rarely does there come a day when going commando is the sensible option, but that’s the jumpsuit for you).

Lanvin a/w 2010

So why? Why subject ourselves to the very real possibility of public humiliation, exposure and (if you’re going down the PVC route) chaffing. Well, aside from the fact that they are f%*@ing cooler than a menthol polar bear floating in the upper troposphere where sky meets space and staring mournfully into a strip-your-face-off sou’westerly…(for sub-zero referencing look no further than the head honcho of retro jumpsuit chic Vince Noir, or Bowie: King of The One-Piece (& the codpiece. Natch! )

At this juncture I would like to invite you to join me in a hushed and reverential kowtow…

Oh, what would I not give for a glam-tastic Ziggy Stardust Jumpsuit!

End of digression.

Sonia Rykiel Resort 2010

Flattering on just about every figure, sexy, in a kinky Kim Basinger kind of way, super hot with a pair of heels, comfortable and office-friendly – that’s some serious day-to-night potential right there (hallelujah!)

Matthew Williamson Resort 2010

Etro s/s 2010

Left: DKNY s/s 2010,  Right: Jean Paul Gaultier s/s 2010

In the end, the out-and-out godlike genius of the jumpsuit far outweighs the mundane faffy little impracticalities. After all, if it were easy –  if it were practical – it just wouldn’t be fashion now would it…

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Amazing Lace…

Dolce & Gabbana: s/s 2010

Philip Treacy for Valentino Garavani

I am not, as a general rule, the most girlish of girls so for me the s/s 2010 foray into Mills and Boon style flounces and romantic ruffles of chiffon and tulle in a palette of nudes, neutrals and pretty pastels was – from the off – going to be a tough one. It’s not that I didn’t like the idea – on the contrary, I have always wanted to be the ‘butter wouldn’t melt’ girl – it’s the fear that, under all those delicate layers and wistfully nostalgic detailing, I’d end up less ‘pastoral goddess’ and more ‘Miss Havisham’ clinging desperately to the mouldering trappings of her faded youth.

It’s the lace that does it…conjuring, as it does, images of yellowing net curtains, table cloths, doilies and the whiff of moth-balls. But the profusion of prettiness storming the runways and the high-street has, as always, given me pause for thought. Tongue-in-cheek broderie Anglaise at Chanel, sheer lingerie-inspired delights from Galliano for Dior, even the sunglasses were all prettied-up at Erdem…I could go on…and on…And then there are the obvious advantages to this look – not least its endlessly fun good girl/bad girl versatility.

Chanel s/s 2010

Dior haute couture s/s 2010

With this in mind I decided to face my fear, bite the white bullet, march straight into the sickly sweet jaws of femininity and declare (with much exaggerated gusto): ‘I AM WOMAN hear me… er…giggle coquettishly as I wantonly skip through a haystack-bedecked pastoral idyll of innocence.’

Funnily enough, having got my hands on a fabulous Little Mistress mini dress (empire line, white lace, netting and tulle, ¾ sleeves and a low square neckline – bargain by the way; New Look, Oxford Street (I’m not sure if they do this line in smaller stores or online but it’s definitely worth a look)) I have been well and truly converted to the cause. And while butter would still melt in my mouth, I definitely don’t look like an embittered old spinster, and that’s good enough for me.

Style ideas…

Sex-up a barely there lace mini dress with leather and D&G-style shoe boots for a rock-chick vibe, or go pastoral with chintzy prints and tan accessories for some country-girl charm. Try teaming a dress with this season’s summer peep-toe/ cutaway heel boots for some so now style or be bold in brogues, scrunched-down knee socks, micro shorts and a Topshop lace body. Choose laced-up accessories for a more subtle take on the trend and mix them up any-which-way for some genre-busting subversiveness.

H&M Divided Collection s/s 2010