A fashionable weekend in London
"What are you up to this weekend?"
It's the age-old question that you're guaranteed to ask, or be asked, on a Friday afternoon. Some of us let the weather rule our weekend activities (which seems odd to me considering how inconsistent it is) whilst the rest of us spend time carrying out the tasks we avoided every weekday evening (that big pile of washing is gradually getting higher, I really need to get the hoover out, and my parents are long over due a visit). We're all guilty of spending our only days off getting caught up in monotonous weekends and doing things for others, so I'm encouraging you to be a little selfish. If you happen to find yourself in London this weekend, Catwalk Queen has put together some suitably fashionable activities and events to get your pulse racing. Whether you're a local or a tourist, we think there's something for every fashion lover to enjoy! Be warned: if you've already made plans, you might just be tempted to change them...
Ballgowns: British Glamour Since 1950 at the V&A
Opening at the Victoria & Albert Museum this Saturday is the highly anticipated ballgown exhibition, spanning over sixty years of British design. As expected, a selection of royal gowns will be on display, as well as plenty of red carpet and catwalk dresses by talented designers such as Alexander McQueen, Sarah Burton, and Erdem. From Catherine Walker's designs for Princess Diana, to Beyonce's silver satin Ralph and Russo gown worn to serenade President Barack Obama at his inauguration, there are dresses to excite and inspire everyone. Curator Oriole Cullen told Vogue, "We looked for examples that would both exemplify their periods and look stunning on display. In addition, we've been able to highlight a number of stories around the wearers and occasions associated with the gowns. The whimsical exhibition design creates a fantasy-like setting which will surprise and delight our visitors."
Christian Louboutin at the Design Museum
In a UK first, the Design Museum is celebrating iconic French shoe designer, Christian Louboutin. The exhibition showcases his fascinating career, featuring twenty years of design and inspiration, from sketchbooks to prototypes and production. Famed for their red soles, you can catch a glimpse of a stunning range of shoes, from embellished flats to sky-high heels. There's also the wonderful (yet dubiously named) Hologram and Fetish room...
Beyond Retro's 10th Anniversary
Arguably one of the South's most popular vintage haunts, Beyond Retro is celebrating 10 years of sartorial heaven! Can you believe it? The London and Brighton based stores have been partying all week, and this Saturday is no exception - there'll be an afternoon of acoustic music with Hoxton FM between 1-6pm at the Dalson boutique. We've also heard rumours of anniversary totes up for grabs, and loyal BR shoppers will receive free birthday treats throughout the middle of May.
A Right Royal Do! at Clerkenwell Vintage Fashion Fair
It seems everyone has something to celebrate this weekend, and this amazing vintage fair is pulling out all the stops for their third anniversary! As usual there will be an unbelievable collection of designer pieces (from Biba and Vivienne Westwood, to Chanel and Dior) and 50 cherry picked traders from across the UK. As well as this, vintage hunters can enjoy a tearoom, a beauty parlour and a pop-up florist in between shopping, and if you get too tired you can even hire a personal shopper! There will be live music to keep you entertained, on the spot alterations, pearly kings and queens collecting for charity, and Simon Armstrong, British Fashion Councils celebrated photographer, will be there to document the event with fashion portraits.
Hermès: Leather Forever at 6 Burlington Gardens
Marking its 175th anniversary, Hermès is presenting an exhibition of iconic handbags designed through the decades. The exhibition will take visitors on a journey of Hermès' life, highlighting his work as a saddle and harness-maker before going on to become one of the world's most renowned fashion labels. You'll be invited to witness a series of leather making and designing demonstrations led by experts, and celebrate a new collection of four handbags - each representing England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales - which have been created especially for the occasion.
Marilyn Monroe at Getty Images Gallery
Commemorating 50 years since the untimely death of the legendary Marilyn Monroe is the Getty Images Gallery. Showcased in London for the first time, the exhibition will feature unique behind the scenes images and infamous photographs of Monroe, as well as a collection of dresses and costumes worn by the Hollywood star.
Harvey Nichols: British Designers Secret Garden
If the week has left you feeling drained and in need for a gin cocktail or two, make a beeline for the Fifth Floor Terrace of Harvey Nichols. This seriously cool retreat has been given a fashion makeover, with designers creating bespoke decorations and artwork for the space. You can even sip away your weekend with a cocktail inspired by each designer! There's a giant modern-day confession box by Marios Schwab where you can let go of your fashion sins, a floral planted wall by Roksanda Illincic, a colourful Perspex sculpture by Peter Pilotto, and a stained glass floral projections from Mary Katrantzou. Mary's cocktail even comes served in a minature watering can!
If you'd like to take part in any or all of Catwalk Queen's fashionable weekend adventure, click here! We've created a map for you so you don't get lost (because we're nice like that).