Archive | October, 2012

Wool School and Emma de Vries Foxy Jumper…

29 Oct

I have posted often on the fabulous Campaign for wool, set up to promote the benefits and versatility of wool.  The Campaign has HRH The Prince of Wales as confirmed patron until 2015 and is a collaborative initiative that involves  farmers, manufacturers, fashion designers &  retailers from around the world. 15th – 21st October saw Britain celebrate wool week, it was a full week of woolly stunts and new initiatives.

My favorite of these was 2012 Wool School, a great opportunity  for fashion, textile and design students to compete with their knitwear designs to be sold in some of the UK’s top retailers.

“WOOL SCHOOL has been created to encourage the young designers of tomorrow to engage with the UK’s favourite natural fibre as they are guided by their paired retailer in a creative production process. 5% of WOOL SCHOOL jumper sales will go back into fashion education programmes across the UK and Wool School will be back, bigger and better in 2013!” Campaign for wool

My personal favorite winner is this super cute foxy jumper…

Image from http://www.campaignforwool.org

You can see all the winning Designs on their website. Which is your favourite?

 

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Time for Tweed!

25 Oct

                                                 £250 with free UK P&P www.tweedvixen.co.uk

Definition of Tweed..

24 Oct

I was recently asked by the fabulous Audacious Huxley for my definition of tweed.  I thought that the answer would be easy and obvious, until I actually thought about it.  Just parroting the usual Oxford dictionary description; “a rough surfaced woolen cloth, typically of mixed fleck colours, originally produced in Scotland.”  or giving the standard origin story regarding tweed being a misreading of the word twill, whilst all true it seemed an empty answer.

I believe that tweed is a fabric steeped in British Heritage and so for me must be made in the United Kingdom or Ireland. I know that many great Mills around the world make a tweed fabric to different levels of quality, some rather good but to me they are not tweed.  When buying a tweed garment surely part of the appeal is the heritage and the story it tells.

Tweed must be at least 80% wool or it is not tweed! I think it is great how popular tweed is in the high street at the moment but my pet peeve is garments with no wool content being called tweed. I will use  Marks & Spencer as an example, online today they have a skirt that  is described as “Classic Collection Tweed Pencil Skirt” and is priced at a very reasonable £29.50.  However this skirt has no wool content at all, 72%  Polyester,  21% Cotton & 7% Viscose.  This garment has no right to be called tweed…

The delight of tweed is its versatility, it is a beautiful, warm, hard-wearing fabric that can be as colourful or neutral as the personality wearing it.  The texture of tweed means that it can be matched with other items to become either traditional or contemporary.  Tweed changes with the person wearing it and can adapt to any style.

In conclusion, I have released that I am a bit of a tweed snob and I am not sure any short definition can give tweed its full justice.  If forced to produce one, I would say.

“Originating from Scotland and made within the British Isles tweed is a woolen woven fabric. Favored by many for its warm properties, hardiness and unique style.”

I would love to hear what your definition of tweed is…

The Perfect Ethical Dress for Autumn…

22 Oct http://www.tweedvixen.co.uk/nancy-dee-crystal-dress---slate-arrows-126-p.asp

In a world of disposable cheap fashion, the ethics and sustainability of our clothing seem to have been forgotten by many. British fashion brand Nancy Dee are committed to producing stylish and versatile pieces that adhere to these principles.  All their pieces are made in Britain and made from fibers that are extracted from renewable natural sources.  They have also produced the perfect dress for this Autumn season, the Crystal Dress.

This dress is a long T-shirt style dress with long sleeves and is made from super soft organic cotton. It is a great base to achieve different looks with layering.  The RRP for this dress is £65 but for a limited time it is available for £55 with free UK shipping  at www.tweedvixen.co.uk.

Blowing in the Wind.

18 Oct http://www.tweedvixen.co.uk/silver-birch-leaf-pendant-and-chain-201-p.asp

This stunning range of Jewellery is made with real leaves.  Each leaf is hand-picked and checked for imperfections, once chosen the leaf is fitted with an electrical contact point and hand painted with a copper solution. When it has dried the leaf is placed in an electrolytic solution that has  microscopic particle of 24K gold (nickel free). The electrical contact attracts the gold particles causing a metal build up on the leaf. This clever process preserves all the delicate and intricate details.  The pendants are surprisingly sturdy considering how delicate they look.  Each leaf is a unique piece of art.

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Available to buy at www.TweedVixen.co.uk

 

Eton Style…

18 Oct

Ok, so this actually has nothing to do with fashion but I could not resist sharing this video…

The Wonder of Orla Kiely

18 Oct

Styled the “Queen of Prints”, Orla Kiely is an Irish designer whose work, thanks to the wonderful prints, is instantly recognisable. Orla Kiely graduated from the Royal College of Art with a Master’s Degree and is now based in London, although her designs and products are sold all over the world.

Orla Kiely bags are a focal point of her collections; she quickly moved into designing handbags following her initial work on hat design. The AW12 collection features a number of Tonal leather bags which will look great paired up with a tweed jacket in these colder months or a tweed skirt.

Her dresses are just as beautiful as her bags and her clothing lines have gained international attention thanks to Kate and Pippa Middleton both choosing the designer for trips out and social engagements. A recent Tweed Vixen blog provided some great fashion tips for keeping warm this autumn  and one of the suggestions was knee-high socks. These would look great when paired up with one of the Orla Kiely silk pocket dresses – and this dress features a “hidden hedgehog” print – a pair of boots and a tweed jacket! The perfect outfit for those autumn days when the sun is shining and a gentle breeze that stirs up the falling leaves.

                                                        source: orlakiely.com

The collection of items that Orla Kiely’s work features on continues to grow and her 1960s inspired prints can be seen on household items, bedding, gardening equipment, stationary and even a car! The Citroen DS3 featured an Orla Kiely print on the roof, rear tailgate and in the interior of the car. She has also produced a number of Orla Kiely cases for Apple products  that combine the brilliant designs of her bags, cute prints and padded protection for Apple devices such as: MacBooks, iPads and iPhones. I love how she has created beautiful products for Apple devices that combine fashion with function.

One of my favourite prints is the Multi-stem print; it’s a clean looking design that features leaf stems in earthy colours on a white background. The print has a classic 1960s inspired feel to it and has been used on bags, household items such as lampshades and has even featured on the back of a London bus.

                               source: bloodybrill.blogspot.co.uk

The work of Orla Kiely is well worth checking out and her classic-looking clothing items will look beautiful matched up with some tweed.

Guest article from Ben who blogs about fashion and music (often the more experimental and psychedelic side of the music spectrum!). I love writing about great designers and elegant styles.

14 Oct

The Croft

Last year I organised Glasgow’s first Tweed Ride and such was the demand for another one in 2012 it would have been rude not to oblige.

Being so far from the city meant that this time around I took a back seat / saddle and placed the event in the hands of two Glasgow chaps I knew would make a sterling job of it.

And that they did…

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Getting Ready To Leave…

11 Oct

Such a great Photo! Autumn is here which means it’s TWEEDTIME!

mindysphotography

Getting Ready To Leave...

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Snapshots of the Harris Tweed Ride

11 Oct

I just found this fab video of the Harris Tweed Ride, held in Glasgow.  It is my new favorite as it really captures the feel of the day. Enjoy!

 

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