I’ve worked as a fashion stylist and consultant for over ten years. I work with designers, celebrities, and labels to create and define the look and feel of their brand. A big part of my job is creating mood boards and putting together teams for photo shoots: finding the right photographer, hair and makeup artists and casting the model.
I love styling fashion shows and they happen throughout the year, not just at Fashion Week. I try to do as much work as I can in advance: we do hair and makeup trials weeks before the shows, the clothes and shoes have been organized and the casting is done right up until the day before the show. The more prep we do, the smoother the show day goes and then we can take care of any other problems as they happen. I’m also Fashion Director at Phoenix magazine so it’s important for me to see shows and look for emerging talent. I also write my own fashion blog Stylist Stuff which is quite fun and something that I really enjoy.
I’m styling two shows this season - one is a late start and other is a 7am Sunday morning call time! Friday is always a big day – there are so many shows I’d like to see and after lunch I’m styling The Ones to Watch, which showcases four young designers: this year the designers are Nova Chiu, Myrza de Muynck , Anne Sofie Madsen and Heohwhan Simulation. After that there are several shows I hope to see that evening. Most days I’m up about 7am and home somewhere between midnight and 2am but Saturday can’t be too late a night as Sunday is a 7am call time! I’m styling eco show Prophetik which is always fun and exciting – it’s really quite an event and we usually have live musicians.
There are so many shows that I want to see but it’s impossible to see all of them, plus it’s really important to visit the exhibitions. To get around London Fashion Week I usually walk from one venue to another as most of them are easy to get to and if not I take a taxi – last year I had a rickshaw ride, which was quite fun!
As for food there always seems to be an Itsu nearby - there’s one near Somerset House and one near Vauxhall Fashion Scout so I always manage to eat well and quickly during LFW and of course it’s great to stop for a drink and catch up with friends. I don’t tend to go to lots of parties but this year I’d really like to. Fashion week is usually work for me and but this year I want to have lots of fun!
Last year I styled three shows in one day. My team and I were very organized - we spent weeks preparing as much as we could. It was great and just such a rush. I love the pressure of it all. There was one year when I felt like I was queuing for ages and by the time I got in the venue it was so full that I couldn’t even see the catwalk. It was so packed and there were rows of people just standing and I’m only 5’ 2” so I can’t see over a crowd so what’s the point of staying for the show if you can’t see it?
I love being backstage and I love the moment when the models are in the lineup and we’re just about to start the show, that moment the energy and the anticipation is electric. There are very few parts of my job that I don’t enjoy, although there are things that make the job more difficult to do. Lead times are shorter so instead of having a week to prep a shoot sometimes you’ll only have a day or two's notice and sometimes that feels impossible but you always mange to make it happen – you have to. There are jobs where you don’t choose the team and you are brought in as the stylist. You’re only as good as the weakest member – you can try and bring the person up to the level of the rest of the team but it doesn’t always work that way and you can see how the shoot suffers. That’s always a bit disappointing and frustrating knowing it could have been that much better.
What are your LFW essentials?
My team is essential, I work with a great group of people and that’s so important to having a successful show. It’s easy to keep going at LFW – it’s a source of constant inspiration.
Do you have a LFW 'uniform'?
I’m not the type of girl who spends weeks or even days putting together a LFW wardrobe. I think I’m usually so focused on my shows that I’m not thinking about how I look. I like to have a good size handbag as I always have lots to carry from a notebook, invites, my ipad and iphone and a few Shu Uemura lipsticks. I love boots and if it’s still cold I have an old favourite my Mongolian Lamb gillet from Muks!
Do you have a LFW tribe?
I never really feel the need to be part of a group to go and see shows but maybe it’s because I know that I’ll always run into a few of my people and of course I have my team from Phoenix. This London Fashion Week Kate Nash and I are going to see some shows together and maybe we’ll go to a few parties and that should be super fun.
There are so many things to look forward to at LFW – it’s a source of constant inspiration. I love how dressed up some people get and that they are just hanging about Somerset House to be photographed. I know that I’m going to see some amazing shows, it’s not just the clothes I’m looking at – it’s the whole experience: it’s the models, the way they walk, the hair and makeup and even the music choices. It’s the synergy of everything coming together that makes a great catwalk show.
Tell us something we don't know.
I really dislike people who hold up their iPad to film and take photos at London Fashion Week – I love my ipad but it’s just a bit too big to use like a camera and its really inconsiderate and rude. What’s wrong with those people?
What makes London special is we have great designers from McQueen and Westwood to new emerging talent showing during the same week. It’s important that we have big British brands showing this season like Mc Q, Burberry Prorsum and Stella McCartney it brings a sense of credibility to LFW but also to inspire new talent. Some people say that London is becoming too commercial but I think it will always have a creative edge. The off schedule is constantly growing and has a huge following. Many of these emerging designers go onto the BFC schedule and London really supports and nurtures their talent.