Celebrity stylist and TV presenter Gok Wan is bringing his newest fashion venture to Cardiff on Saturday, April 29, with his Fashion Brunch Club.
Ladies who brunch will be treated to an up-close and personal experience with the man himself, benefiting from his years as a fashion guru to millions of women.
Taking place in New House Country Hotel in Cardiff from 11am - 3pm, the day will combine a five-star brunch and plenty of bubbles (yes, prosecco) with two fashion shows featuring spring/summer lines from local boutiques and designers.
There will also be a body-shape masterclass, a Q&A session with Gok and one lucky lady will even be given a Gok-style make-over, aptly named the “mother of all makeovers”.
Gok said: "I am absolutely thrilled to bring my Fashion Brunch Clubs to so many great places this year and hope that people will take the chance to get all my fashion tips in a more intimate setting.
"There will be something for everyone’s taste.
“We will have 140 outfits on the catwalk, so there will be a lot of visual shopping going on.
"A body shape masterclass which is exactly what I do on television and then we’ll be giving one lady the mother of all makeovers and that will just be someone we choose randomly from the audience.
"Then at the end of the second catwalk show, she’ll be revealed. And when I mean the ‘mother of all makeovers’ I mean hair, makeup and everything else. Who doesn’t love a makeover?"
Gok believes Cardiff has a lot to offer to the fashion world
“The brunch is a celebration of all things, especially local fashion. What we mean by that is, we have the whole day to have a glamorous time but most importantly we go into different areas of Cardiff and use local designers and local makeup.
"There are pockets like this of fashion all over the country, it doesn’t always have to be about London.
“There are really talented people who get no lime light, don’t get a spot at London fashion week, so it’s a real celebration of them, it’s very positive."
“Cardiff has it’s own identity when it comes to fashion. It has a large vintage community as well as a young population, because of the universities, who want to expand with their look.
"I would say Cardiff fashion overall is slightly more relaxed than some places and slightly more unique than others.
“We made sure we were covering as much of the country as possible and we wanted to go further afield than just going to Manchester or London.
"When I think of Wales, Cardiff is the first place I think of and it’s that Celtic blood too. I just know when I come to Cardiff the audience is going to really get involved and have fun.”
And which Welsh girls shout at style to Gok?
“I don’t really follow celebrity fashion but a Welsh person who springs to mind for me is probably Katherine (Jenkins). She loves the contours and the curves so I would have to say her.”
Gok and his team have hand picked the stores they are featuring in the fashion brunch, and to satisfy Cardiff’s love of retro there will be a “vintage edge” to the clothing.
“We had to steer away from using vintage stores because they have one off pieces and it wouldn’t be fair to the ladies if they were all fighting over one item,” he said laughing.
What will the shows cover?
By popular demand, the two fashion shows will cover all basis from lingerie to bridal to classic occasion wear and even slightly more casual looks.
However, despite the elegant brunch and hoards of clothing Gok believes that the body-shape masterclass is when the audience really joins in and becomes a part of the show.
“When we do the body-shape masterclass that’s when the audience comes alive,” he said.
“People are screaming from the audience and we get people on stage. That’s the part where people become more vocal because everyone can relate to it, everyone has a body.
“Understanding your body is really important,” Gok added.
“We have to have a relationship with our body. There will always be bits you don’t like and bits you do like showing off but ultimately people want to find confidence in themselves and look their best.”
Audience participation and reactions to transformations are what has made Gok’s TV shows and events so memorable and heartwarming, and it is what he believes makes the day so fun.
“I really love the stories you hear from women. The minute you scratch beneath the surface, everyone has got a back-story and with the makeovers especially, when you see them transform it’s amazing.
“You get a real mixture of reactions, a lot of women just can’t believe their eyes and then there are the ones that just start screaming and shouting as if there aren’t 200 people in the room with them. The reactions are always fun,” he said.
Can I still get tickets?
More than marketing, Catherine Quin’s fashion show and pop-up store during next month’s America’s Cup in Bermuda will underscore the importance of art in her work and add to the dynamism taking hold on the island where she was born.
Inspired by Robert Rauschenberg and Merce Cunningham, she has commissioned local artists from the Bermuda Biennale to create an installation on the main marina where all the super yachts will be docked at the Hamilton Princess. On the waterfront at what will be the official America’s Cup Hotel, they will create reflective, abstract Stonehenge-style blocks that models will walk around before standing in formation for 20 minutes or so. The 150 guests will then meander amidst the art, enjoying Champagne and taking a closer look at what will be Quin’s first pre-fall collection at the June 12 event.
Locals ranging in age from their 20s to their 60s will model Quin’s designs “to be more reflective of the real woman not just the 18-year-old stick model,” she said. “As good as it is to do fashion weeks, and I’m not going to stop doing that, it’s important to go where your clients are and have fun, exciting and dynamic experiences which entertain and immerse them. And hopefully also raises awareness of things like climate change and other issues while empowering women of different age ranges who are your market.”
A project of this scope is a new challenge for Quin though she has worked closely with artists in the past and has a number of friends who are artists, installation artists and curators at Ballroom Marfa and LACMA. “I’ve been moving a lot in art world circles. I went to Marfa Texas in December, and I’ve made a pilgrimage to see Luis Barragán’s house and studio in Mexico. I’ve really been inspired by site-specific art and Donald Judd in particular. He is one of my all-time heroes for minimalism and all of the minimalist principles that he designs by are very much imbued in my view of what design should be.”
Racing starts for the Louis Vuitton-sponsored event with the qualifiers on May 26, with the top challenger facing the defending champions Oracle Team USA in the 35th America’s Cup Match June 17. They will be competing for the oldest trophy in international sports, dating back to 1851. Having designed items that are “a bit more casual and something that you could wear on a yacht in the height of summer,” Quin said the range will retail from $250 to $1,500 and it will be sold in the pop-up store and on her site.
The show’s setting, the Hamilton Princess, is also all about art thanks to Bermudian brothers Alexander and Andrew Green who bought the property a few years ago and completed a $100 million renovation. Their extensive art collection — including works by Andy Warhol, Banksy, Ai Weiwei, Takashi Murakami, Liu Ye, Henri Matisse, Keith Haring, Josef Albers and Damien Hirst — is featured throughout the property. Quin said her show will be near a Yayoi Kusama pumpkin and hefty KAWS sculpture. “We’re hoping that from this, as an island, we’ll be able to do more art-focused events.…There is a little bit of an old-fashioned society here with a lot of 60- and 70-year-old men, who have sort of been running the show. There is a newer generation in their 30s and 40s who want to make Bermuda more of a cultural and aspirational country, and a destination for tourists.”
Quin made the point that Alexander Calder’s kinetic sculpture has been a huge tenet of her label in relation to movement, fluidity and the idea that women are in the world living their lives. “They’re not static and it’s important to design with that in mind,” she said. Quin herself worked as a corporate lawyer before starting her own collection about two and a half years ago. Before doing so, she spent six months at Vena Cava in Los Angeles learning about sales, marketing and operations while they were developing a diffusion collection.
The waterfront location is also meant to remind guests of the importance of environmentalism. Quin said, “In Bermuda, people really value conservation and preserving the environment and history through the planning commission. For the last 400 years, we all have roofs that collect our rain water for tanks.”
But Quin won’t be playing any favorites during the America’s Cup. “I like Team Japan because I love the architecture of Tadao Ando and Japanese design. I like Oracle because Larry Ellison brought the Cup here. I’m British so I like Land Rover Ben Ainslie Racing. So if any of those win, I’ll be happy. That’s my diplomatic answer.”Read more at:formal dresses melbourne
Fashion Merchandising and Design students showcased their clothing lines in front of a crowd of roughly 2,000 at the 19th Annual Threads Fashion Show on April 22.
Other than the guidance of faculty adviser Ian Mull, students carried out the planning, production and fundraising for Threads. The work of 26 student designers was worn by more than 100 models on the runway at Finch Fieldhouse.
The purpose of Threads is to give students the opportunity to participate in a professional runway show.
“We channeled influences from New York Fashion Week or a fashion event you might see for retailers,” Mull said. “I try to make it as similar as possible.”
Ithaca senior Carly Coleman, the director of logistics for the show, said participants got to see Finch Fieldhouse as "they have never seen Finch before." She described the setting as “really amped up” with an interior consisting of black curtains and a black runway framed by a chain of lights.
“Finch is an old gym that is kind of worn down, but coming into the show everything (looked) so different,” Coleman said.
After 45 minutes of modeling, the show broke off into a Q&A with fashion consultant and "Project Runway" co-host Tim Gunn.
“This was a fabulous, fabulous show,” Gunn said.
Gunn discussed body shaming in the fashion industry, his experience on “Project Runway” and his thoughts on careers in fashion merchandising and design.
“This industry has no room for crybabies,” Gunn said. “Passion and love are most important."
Before the show, guests viewed the Mounted Expedition, which showcased several pieces of fashion-related artwork designed by students. Pieces included garments, fashion-related paintings, sketches and photographs.
There was also a red carpet photo booth, a merchandise table and an autograph table for special guest, “Project Runway Junior” finalist Isabella Kostrzewa.
Attendees were able to purchase T-shirts and tote bags designed by the Fashion Show Production and Promotion class.
“This year we wanted to revamp the logo and change it up. A mission for this show was to really expand our brand,” Illinois senior Anyce Harvey said. “The design is supposed to be the seven wonders of the world around a circle.”Read more at:plus size formal dresses