OK guys, I’m finally back from skiing. I was actually ill whilst I was in the Czech Republic, but that was no fault of theirs. In fact, everybody rallied around to make sure that I got better. More of that next week!
Last week, I wrote about Berlin Fashion Week.
Let’s be honest. One of the reasons that people swarm over to Berlin like bees flying to a sticky honeypot, is because of the constant jollification! Oh yeah! Berlin knows how to paaaarty, and Berlin Fashion Week was absolutely no exception. In fact, it was far much better….!
The fact that I had various press passes ensured that many doors were open to me and boy, did I use my privileges!
I went to so many parties that I actually turned some down! I was knackered and had drunk far too much champagne. It was time for a detox as I just couldn’t take the high life any more. The next day, I had no alcohol. NO ALCOHOL! The day after, I had a glass of champagne. Only A GLASS! And the day after that, I had a glass of champagne at a fashion event, and a lemon beer. A LEMON BEER people. OMG!
WHAT THE HELL DID I DO???
The first party that I went to was at Bread&Butter. Bread&Butter is a huge denim-focused urban street wear fair that was located at the biggest airport in the world – Tempelhof. In fact, every time you watch a film about pre-1945 Germany, and there’s a huge airport involved, it’s that one.
It was closed a few years ago because of the speculation that it’s in the middle of the city and therefore dangerous to all…! As result, Bread&Butter making Berlin it’s headquarters was welcomed until last summer when bankruptcy was whispered.
Bread&Butter really didn’t know whether they were coming or going and in early December had cancelled participation at Berlin Fashion Week for 2015! After much support by local Berliners and a number of lawyers, by mid-Decemeber, they were back with a new concept: “BREAD&BUTTER – BACK TO THE STREET.”
Please remember that when Germans say “back to the street” although you may be thinking of hard-core New York, Germans are thinking of Berlin trendy locations. You may be thinking of deprived neighbourhoods, Germans are thinking of gentrification. You may be thinking “I don’t want to go there,” Germans are pushing and shoving to get an invite!
As such, an Email was sent to me informing me that BREAD&BUTER was going to host a “guerrilla” trade show at ‘The Blue Yard’ in the heart of Berlin – a suburb called “Mitte” for trade visitors and press representatives.
My goodness. It was only 18:00 and “The Blue Yard” was pumping. There were live DJ’s and live musicians, and the crowd was spilling out into the rainy Berlin trendy streets. Oh yeah, it was raining but some trade fair venues were handing out umbrellas so I had this huge piece of equipment trailing with me, wherever I went….!
Fridges were all over the venue and you just helped yourself to some beers or water. The beer – Heineken! Oh dear. I had a few sips and quickly abandoned it.
There was a tent for refreshments so I had some currywurst, chips (fries), and a bun. You all know how much I like currywurst! Within the inner core of a denim store was a gin & tonic bar and gin & tonic lollipops! Strictly adults only of course. I had a quick chat with them as they recognised me from last season!
I couldn’t really spend too much time there as I had an appointment to go to BIKINI as I’m always interested in supporting young German talent.
I’d never been there before but I’d seen Bikini’s billboards all over West Berlin. I got there about 20:00 and of course, the main building was closed to the public but not to participants of Berlin Fashion Week, and definitely to press individuals.
I managed to catch them at the end of their presentation, and mingle. I also managed to nibble on their truffle titbits and drink their wine. They ran out of glasses and cups so rushed around to find me one and explained their concept of combining truffles and wine as a Southern France family business overseeing a pop-up restaurant service in Berlin. They are called Truffle & Wine Berlin by Chez Serge.
I must say that their titbits were delicious but I had to leave for my next engagement, so they gave me a bottle of French wine to take home with me. Thanks guys!
Last week, I told you a little about PANORAMA Berlin Fashion Fair. PANORAMA presents contemporary fashion, shoes, accessories and lifestyle articles. Not only that, but they always have really cool parties going on. Last season, I went to the PREMIUM party of the week, this season, I went to Panorama’s.
On the outside, the club looked pretty dingy but on the inside, it was packed with hipsters, rockers, and the fashion set. Watergate has two floors and through the wide floor-to-ceiling windows you could see the river. Known for its LED lighting panel that spans the entire length of the top floor of the club, Watergate mostly plays house and techno music.
Just what I like!
Open bars are fabulous but can be killers especially if you’re drinking gin & tonic, standing right in front of the live DJ, twirling around, and surrounded by guys who could actually dance! I got there about 22:30 and by midnight, I’d had enough. I’m not 21 years old any more. I cannot dance all night long anymore.
A few hours, and I’m done!
It’s a little sad ‘cos when I was actually 21, I could party like the best of them non-stop. And why not? I was young, I was at university, and I wasn’t broke.
The next step was to get a taxi home.
If I could find one.
The streets were swarming with pretty fashion people, and the grungy Berlin set.
I blame the hot dog that I told you about last week! Suffice to say, my umbrella and I got home safely!
After that, it was serious fashion business.
And Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin or MBFWB ?
Well, it was fantastic. Again, I felt really honoured that Mercedes-Benz had given my blog and I, the green light. Thank you! Here we go:
MERCEDES-BENZ FASHION WEEK BERLIN or MBFWB:
I’d never been there before so I was really impressed by the location which was right outside the famously renowned Berlin landmark – Brandenburg Gate. There was a huge amount of security but once you had shown your pass or invitation, everything calmed down.
There was a huge lounge and it was filled with the latest Mercedes-Benz car, there was a “for camera/TV” make-up & nail section sponsored by Maybelline, which I desperately wanted to go to, but the queues were too long and I didn’t want to miss the fashion shows. There was also a “design-your-own” little booklet sponsored by Herlitz, a “green” bag and on-the-spot artistically drawn box sponsored by Fashion I.D. and Peek & Cloppenburg. I took the bag but couldn’t wait for the box due again, to the queues. At each fashion show, there was a goodie-bag of sort filled with hairspray, socks, nail varnish, creams, chocolate, bracelets, little booklets, discount on designer labels, a winter-pack, etc. Very, very nice.
There was also champagne and water sponsored by Jules & Mmm.
I had lots of water.
Last season was the first time that I had ever seen a real catwalk show and I was on the front row! At MBFWB, I was to get closer. Much closer. In fact, if you look on the right-hand side of the photo below, you can actually see my red handbag on the floor and my hand on a pale green iPhone!
- I went to the stage catwalk of Ioana Ciolacu. I was on the front row! Ioana is a designer street wear collection. It’s aim are designer clothes that you can wear on a daily basis and still have comfort and accessibility.
- There was pink hair, stripes and fur galore. And that was from the guests, not the models! This designer had cashmere seats with loose backs, stripped and tweed culottes, flared cut-offs and flowered cut out prints stuck onto the clothes themselves. Colours were creams, greys, pinks and black.
- I went to the runway catwalk of William Fan next. Again, I was on the front row! William is a new designer whose clothes are minimalistic, aesthetic, have clean lines and are functional. I agree! The clothes had smooth lines, were boxy, casual, and wide. Lots of short-cropped jackets over long shirts, and cut-off trousers.
- In my opinion street wear for the person who wants to look relaxed but elegant. Lots of tweeds and lines for both boys and girls. Very Berlin! Colours were black and dark blue.
- Most faces looked serious and even quite sullen. I’m not sure if that was the look they were going for but I have to say as glamorous as it may sound, it must be awfully difficult to be a catwalk model and have all these people (including myself), very close to you, staring at you, and putting your face and body all over the media world.
- The next day, I went to the runway catwalk of Use Unused. This collection is all about confident women who wish to dress in unique designs that don’t dominate, but emphasise the female body. Loose roller necks, slightly flared, patterned prints, nice, strong, straight lines.
- Practical clothes that I would actually wear to work myself with just enough colour not to make me look boring or garish! Colours were creams, mauve, blue, olive-green, and grey. The prices are pretty neat too and with my runway show ticket entitles me to a 15% discount before 15.02.15. I might just go ahead and use it!
- I then went to the stage catwalk of Whitetail. This design is about simplicity. Sharp cuts, sharp angles, a masculine outlook but feminine inside.
- Very different. It was quite an interesting set up and there were no seatings. The models were situated in the middle of the room and stood or sat on steps together, so that you could see the clothes. You had to have been there but they were sort of in a circle like statues or human mannequins. As press or guests, you would move around the room rather than the models themselves, and just like artistic street entertainers, they would move an arm slightly or take off a jacket if you needed to take a photograph. Simple and sleek, tweed, linen, or cashmere. Colours were black, grey and white.
I tried and tried to get a ticket. But no can do.
I hung around.
I pestered the organisers.
They tried to help and asked me to wait around.
Oh no! I had to be there.
What should I do?
The girls around me gave up and went home.
I decided to go to the runaway entrance and if I wasn’t sent away, I would just walk in.
With much bravado, I got in.
I didn’t have a ticket so I figured the best place to actually get a seat was in the front row! So to the front row I went. Again!
- I got a seat and a goodie bag. In fact I was actually 2 heads away from the paparazzi cameras. Bulbs flashing and hacks shoving. OMG! I was a little nervous and started sweating. It was Patrice Bouédibéla from MTV Germany. I mean, this guy used to date the American singer: Anastacia! I was actually near a German celebrity so I started speaking to the person who was in between us so that I would look as if I was part of the international group! If you see a photograph of me sitting in a group of MTV German music hosts, that would be it!
- Marina Hoermanseder’s design are heavy coats, over-sized jackets, and opulent collars. The collection unites cashmere jackets and wool blends with high quality leather and turtlenecks. The ultimate highlight of the show was an elaborate leather corset inspired by 17th century orthopedic equipment!
They were all sort of Tim Burton-like, high-waisted trousers, leather tops, fur capes and stoles, double waisted belts, and lots of leather studs. Colours were bright reds, electric blues, light grey. Lots of plastic and leather. Everyone was very excited!
Berlin’s Night of Fashion or BNOF is an event that was created by an agency called after NetWork in 2009 by an exciting, enthusiastic man called Peter Schuler. Berlin’s Night of Fashion is a night where the media, models, photographers, makeup artists, casting agencies, headhunters, fashion individuals, businessmen and sponsors can come together, for a night.
It was freezing and snowing so I arrived fashionably late, but in time for the red carpet photo-shoot and a bottle of Shandy. I needed to take it easy as I had a 50th birthday party to attend later that night, and I wanted to remain upright!
There were screens all around depicting the fashion model castings, rehearsals, make-up, and clips of last summer. I even saw myself on-screen swanning around LOL!
It was an enjoyable fun night.
The night consisted of the Red Carpet, photography and fashion networking so I milled around, got my photo taken, took others, and generally chatted to one and all. There was musical entertainment and then a catwalk presentation by the fashion houses below and these were my first impressions!
- NATALIE JANKE HAUTE COUTURE: Lovely, elegant evening gowns in blue and pink. Lovely colourful high-heeled footwear in mainly cream or black in shoes that I recognise, as I have a pair myself!
- CARINA SHKURÓ: Backless dresses covered with crepe-like material in peacock colours. Very nice!
- WEIBERSTYLE: Colourful street wear. Dresses & Docs or tight print and tartan-like trousers. Very Rupert the Bear! Very 1979 Brit pop! More pop culture and aimed at young people/students with Doc Martens. Pretty much my old school look LOL! I sometimes wear pop socks with my ankle boots & yes, I’ve even got UK socks, boots and trainers, but I digress!
- LIVING FACES: Extra glam hair & make-up. Very Tim Burton in an exquisite black & white way! Lots of white 17th century hair and white powdery make-up. One girl even had a set of chandeliers on her head. Ingenious!
- ALFREDO LIFESTYLE: Long, glittery, cream dresses with fur and feathers in hair! During the break, I managed to take a few photos and chat to some of the wonderfully dressed models!
- ROCKMÄDCHEN: Lots of beads in hair and long beads around the neck. Silks and Jacquards, pale greens and blues with a white background. Very Spring-like! Flat Roman-like sandals and the ever-occuring Spanish theme. But with blond hair!
- THE DRAG WALK: As flamboyant as you can possibly be. With wonderful shoes!
- SORGENKINDER: Jeans, shirts, leggings and sweats. Male and female styles of pilot jackets and printed hoodies. They did some sort of play on stage by re-producing new prints on blank T-shirts. I didn’t really understand what it was meant to represent!
- STYLERSCLUB: This was some sort of hairstylist competition which they brought on stage to the tune of James Bond’s 007 “You Only Live Once!”
I had a wonderful time. Thanks so much everyone.
Many thanks once again to BREAD & BUTTER, BIKINI BERLIN, PANORAMA Berlin Fashion Fair, SHOW & ORDER, BRIGHT, SEEK, PREMIUM, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin, Berlin Fashion Week, and Berlin’s Night of Fashion.
Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin stills by Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images for IMG, Frazier Harrison/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz, Jean Pollex/Getty Images for IMG, Ian Gavin/Getty Images for Use/Unused, Andreas Rentz/Getty Images for IMG, and Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images for IMG.
This article is not sponsored and even though I received complimentary press tickets, all opinions and the various refreshments and Gin & Tonic, are my very own!
I have so much to share with you.
Some time in February, I will be at the Wintergarten Varieté where illusion replaces reality – for their latest production THE MAGICAL MYSTERY SHOW otherwise known as “The Show of the Magician.“
The 65th Berlin International Film Festival – The Berlinale – will be taking place from 05.02.15 – 15.02.15.
Strictly Stand Up – The English Comedy Night is going to take place on 25.02.15 at the Quatsch Comedy Club in Berlin.
I’ll be participating in the pre-ITB Travel Massive event on 03.03.15. If you’re a blogger or just fancy a knees-up, come meet us. It’s going to be so much fun!
The actual International Travel Trade Fair – ITB – will be taking place from 04.03.15 – 08.03. 15.
If you’re not in Berlin in February, where else are you going to be?
February is going to be exhilarating!
Watch this space!
See you in Berlin.
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