Oxfam DIY

Picture 2Oxfam are hosting a DIY section at their Camden store with the help of fashion stylist to the stars Mrs Jones who has styled the likes of Kyle and The Killers…

She will be running a series of workshops within the store and be on hand to offer customisation tips & tricks. This is an exciting way to re-style and re-use reclaimed materials. Offering such support has the potential to inspire people to be more creative with discarded clothing…

Running parallel to the workshops are DIY tools online and a DIY fashion competition. Visit their website for more information…Picture 1

Very Fashion & Style

very fashion

Images sourced from Very’s flickr account

Very – is a new online fashion brand who have integrated social networking and digital media tools like you tube, twitter and flickr into its social platform.  This will allow members to converse about clothing with others including expert stylists and celebrities!

The VIP lounge will open its digital doors tomorrow,  hosting a live chat with Vogue TV presenter and stylist Louise Roe.  The VIP lounge will allow members to discuss fashion and style with support. Louise is an industry expert who writes style columns for a number of fashion magazines like Elle and Vogue, she interviews top designers, celebrities and reports each seasons key trends for Vogue TV. So having access to her knowledge and expertise is an opportunity not to be missed! Guest speakers will follow on every day this week from Miranda Levy, Simon Webb, Fearne Cotton and Caprice.

The platform is said to evolve around the response of its users. I think its fab that Very are putting their members at the forefront and really paying attention to their interaction. We all love shopping (well I do!) and in the current economic climate and concern over environmental issues it can be very difficult to make fashion decisions. High street fashion has made clothing accessible to everyone but we have so many decisions to make… this can allow fashion to become lost in translation and maybe even take the joy away if shopping becomes more stressful. Therefore I welcome a platform that will provide support, allow us to ask questions and source style advice.

I love shopping but its not just the joy of walking out of a shop with a new garment (unless its something I been coveting for ages) but also the experiential value associated. Shopping can be a really social activity… we support each other and offer advice on what to wear and when.  Fashion is an important part of our lives it performs functionally but it can also promote well being and self confidence.  Finding a place and time to chat with friends and share fashion stories can be difficult to slot into our everyday lives but through using the internet we can communicate with our friends on the move…

Its great that Very are allowing us to apply digital media tools which we are already familiar  to fashion. Will it improve our fashion, style and allow us to make new friends in the process? Hopefully, we will need to watch that Internet space….

very fashion flickr

Research Network University of The Arts, London

Measuring where we are…
All first year PhD research students at the University of the Arts, London present their research at the end of their first year. We have to perform a 15 minute presentation followed by a 10 minute question and answer session to communicate our research and development. This provides us with an opportunity to introduce our research and source feedback from amultidisciplinary audience.  

On Monday I introduced my research project “Considerate Clothing”.   Preparing the presentation was a valuable exercise as it allowed me to reflect on my practice and research. Where does it sit within a fashion context? What are my future directions? How do I communicate my work? The questions and feedback I received identified new and current issues that require further consideration as I move my research forward through both theory and practice. 
I have benefited by listening  to my peers present…I can relate to their approach or process. We possibly sit within different research disciplines but we are applying a similar method or documenting our results in a similar format? I have found this a valuable exercise and I am looking forward to watching the remaining presentations this week.

Mary Queen of Charity Shops

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Mary with the volunteers from Save The Children

I watched the finale of Mary Queen of Charity Shops last night and am really impressed with Mary’s efforts. She collaborated with the charity Save the Children and took on the challenge of making charity shops profitable and desirable. When I watched the first episode I thought what a challenge!

I love vintage and thrift shop fashion so shopping in charity shops really appeals to me. But as they explained the effort they have to invest in sorting through soiled clothing to find the rare gem… I was shocked. I carefully select what I donate to a charity shop and though everything was donated lovingly! I liked the given with love campaign but it did make me feel slightly embarrassed as I should be donating more than I do…

I love the people who volunteered and really felt for them at times. Last nights episode showed the volunteers pitched D-Day (Donate, don’t dump) to big corporations like Google… The finale showed what a journey Mary and the volunteers have taken and I think it’s going to make people think about charity shops differently. The also visited Ravensbourne College and invited the students to sell their designs. One student was upcyling bags through reclaimed materials…

I visited Mary’s “Living and Giving” Charity shop in Westfield’s last Saturday… and I thought it was fab! There was a really friendly, welcoming atmosphere and lots of fashion treasures! Apparently the store has raised £60,ooo so far!

 Its open until the 27th June head down to Westfields Shopping Centre and check it out…