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I Dream of a Lifestyle Involving Many Cocktail Dresses VII: Top Shop's Designer Collaborations

Saturday, 16 February 2008

Originally I was going to do a second wrapup post for London Fashion Week, but I feel sort of indifferent towards the shows, even Luella's collection, which I had been looking foward to. With all the young and tredy prom dresses, Luella's S/S08 collection was so cute. The new F/W08 collection is cute too, in a darker way, but I'm just not that into some of the more bohemian-looking dresses.

Yes, I am still obsessed with looking at young, wearable dresses. And one thing that I have been obsessively staring on my computer screen this week has been the Designer collaboration collections with Top Shop Boutique. The designers involved are the 'it' British designers of the moment, including Preen, Peter Jensen, Christopher Kane, Marios Schwab, Todd Lynn, Richard Nicoll, Jonathan Saunders and Louise Goldin. From what I've seen online, some of the collaberations seem to be limited to shoes. But the majority of them have a small, but decent range of clothes available. The thing I like about these Top Shop collections is that the clothes have mostly been very nice -decent quality and designer-level designs at (mostly) reasonable prices.

The collection that I had been looking foward to most was the Richard Nicholl collection. The clothes just seem so simple, nicely cut and practical. Take this ruffle dress and peach blazer for example, it would make a great fancy dinner outfit. It could even pass as a work outfit if your workplace is dressy (but not business formal.)

After seeing this Jonathan Saunders dress in stores and online, I thought it was a good imitation of the original dress from his F/W07 collection (left), but tight jersey dresses don't usually look good on people. However, just a few days ago, I saw a girl wearing this out (without a jacket so she was probably freezing) in Leister Square, and she looked amazing in it! She made it look so young, fun and trendy, and it's really those fashion moments that you love the idea of designer-highstreet collaborations.

Another dress that I saw in store and actually liked is this Louise Goldin dress. The colours and pattern is quite pretty. The problem is, since it is a sleeveless dress, it's clearly much more suited for summer than winter. But it's made of knitted material (50% cotton, 50% viscose,) it felt too thick to wear in summer and not washing machine-friendly. Too bad.

The collection that I wasn't expecting to like but ended up liking the most is Marios Schwab's. Last season when Marios Schwab designed a few things for Top Shop, all I saw were black dresses, so I wasn't quite impressed. But this time, there are some young, casual clothes with unique-but-not-weird-looking designs. Take this block-coloured dress -it would be perfect for a fun night out, and it's colourful without looking tacky.

The Marios Schwab dress that really caught my eye was this knotted dress. I am worried that it would make one look like she was wearing a picnic cloth, but it's hard to tell until I see it in real life. I just really like the knotted detail and the combination of two seemingly-mismatched prints. Sort of fun and funky without me actually putting in the effort to mismatch clothes and end up looking like a mess. Unfortunately, they've run out of this dress online. I wonder if they still have it in stores. What do you think of this dress? Opinion please!

What really irritates me about these collections is that they ALWAYS run out of the smallest sizes within 12 hours of release online. Would it hurt for them to actually stock up on the clearly popular smaller sizes? Seriously. Hmm, I wonder if the actaul shops would still have all the sizes available.

Image credits: www.vogue.co.uk, www.topshop.com

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