AW12 showcase of luxury British brands
Upon arriving at the Dean Street location for the AW12 showcase of luxury brands, the first thing I noticed was the Charlie Chaplin lookalike serving drinks to the guests. Secondly, I noticed the glorious collection of jewels before me and was welcomed by a representative of the great British jewellers, Robinson Pelham. In case you didn’t know, Robinson Pelham are master jewellers for the Royal Family and also the proud creators of the delightful diamond oak leaf and acorn earrings worn by Kate Middleton and the diamond drop earrings worn by Pippa for the Royal Wedding last year.
A bespoke jewellers, exclusively by appointment only at their Pimlico office, they were showcasing their latest collection of luxury jewels to commemorate their 15th year anniversary. On display were their seasonally appropriate egg pendants made from gold adorned with diamonds, garnets, sapphires and eye-catching emeralds.
The Capsule Collection was captivating to say the least. I was particularly transfixed on the unique lavender amethyst earrings and matching pendant with a yellow gold surround, set with pink sapphires and diamonds.
The Champagne Collection was modern and unique, inspired by a champagne glass set in gold, with the diamonds loosely set in some designs to resemble the bubbles. I was delighted to find my very own gold and diamond set champagne bracelet in my goodie bag on the way home!
After taking Mr Chaplin up on his offer of a glass of bourbon and ginger ale, I got speaking to designer Rebecca Street, who recently made her debut at London Fashion Week with her foggy woodland themed collection. Rebecca explained what goes on behind the making of her garments, which are made mainly of silk, leather and tweed. The silk is made at one of the last existing mills in the UK, using silk mainly from France and India. Rebecca is also very passionate about ethical and sustainable fashion and her first collection is a product of this. The intricate design of the brown leather dress for example, is cut out to resemble a tree in line with the theme and rather than being laser cut, was hand cut using vegetable tan leather. The tweed jackets are made using local sheep’s wool in Scotland and their garments are harsh chemical free. The collection is set in neutral earthy tones of mint greens and beige and is available online from £700-£1,000.
I was then greeted by Suzannah, the designer behind her self-titled brand. She showed me through her informal bridal wear collection. Although the dresses were very feminine in lace and 50s style pleated skirts, they were certainly low key, but still very elegant.
Suzannah also informed me her day wear collection is available in Harvey Nichols. As I browsed through the rails, I asked if she was inspired by the 40s and 50s as I noticed the feminine shapes and fur stoles were reminiscent of those times and she agreed those eras were indeed an inspiration behind her designs. I also discovered Pippa Middleton is a fan of the brand. I can see why.
And last, but by no means least I met with Edwina Ibbotson, who displayed quite a fascinating collection of hats and head pieces. I could certainly see the ladies queuing up to place their orders for the Ascot with the milliner. Edwina, who has been designing her pieces for over 20 years has built up an impressive clientele, with ladies regularly seeking her to add the finishing touch for weddings, races and whatever the occasion may be. All Edwina’s pieces are handmade using materials such as felt, straw and silk. And there are no two hats made alike – meaning when you turn heads in her creations, it won’t be because you’re wearing the same as someone else.
A quick glass of bubbly for the road and then I left, impressed by the inspiring ladies holding the flag for luxury British fashion.
Photos: Sara Reverberi