John Lewis Christmas Fashion Show.
Being a newbie to the world of Blogs I'm not entirely sure how often one is supposed to put pen to paper ... My last foray was two weeks ago but so much seems to have happened since then.
Five castings (one shortlist and one booking, that's a brilliant return for me!), one corporate video shoot, two photo shoots and two catwalk shows (photo above - Alistair, Jo and Greg) for John Lewis. That was an amazing day, fourteen models all thoroughly spoilt and pampered by the JL Fashion Advisors Team, Eugene's hair stylists, not forgetting Heather and her Amazing Nail Bar and Lauren and her make-up wizardry.
One unexpected pleasure and advantage to this new life is learning far more about London than I had ever had the chance to before. This past two weeks has taken me from the designer streets of South Ken, to the markets of Borough, from the Georgian terraces of Highbury to multicultural Bethnal Green, from the 'real' East End of Leather Lane to upmarket Holland Park, from the casting Meccas of Soho and Holborn to the historic Ealing Studios.
Away from 'work' I returned to Heathrow for the BAA Volunteer Induction Day. First shifts scheduled for December. We'll be the ones in purple fleeces and satin sashes ...
The social highlight of the past fortnight was a superb meal at Cafe Moniz, a Portuguese cafe and restaurant in Cranford, near Heathrow. We've been there several times and have yet to find fault. Try the bitoque de porco and the vinho tinto from Palmela.
As I write this, next week's diary has but a couple of pencils so far. Strange game this, it really is a case of lastminute.com!
Post show interview with Elle Osili for Mellow 9 Productions
While enjoying the delights of Azeitao last week I got a message via ModelMayhem from that wonderful organisation Models of Diversity founded by the legendary Angel Sinclair. Was I interested in being part of their Ideal Home at Christmas fashion show? 'Definitely' was the answer.
A casting (successful for once!) and a fitting under the arches in Hoxton followed. We met on the steps of Earls' Court Exhibition Centre yesterday morning. Despite the mild weather, standing on a carpet of fake snow with a sled and Christmas tress make it a chilly wait. So pleased to see my old friend AC from Extra days, A from the South Coast who had had to catch the milk train to get there on time.
Once inside we had a couple of practice walks on our runway, slightly shaky ones to say the least in my case. I really prefer to have something to carry, never quite sure what to do with redundant hands.
After three hectic and chaotic hours of hair, make-up and dressing the show started. First two out, male and female, in their underwear decorated in tinsel - what a start! Lingerie, plus size, disabled and wrinkly (me!) models were all featured. My dress was by Masato Jones, a black and muted gold satin number, far shorter than anything I've worn since the 70s ...
Show over, by all accounts it was really well received, it was time to grab a coffee (outrageous prices, £2.30 for a simple black coffee, that's on top of the £12 entrance fee. Come on Earl's Court, that's taking the mick).
Second show and a second outfit for me. A simply fabulous tuxedo suit, white pintucked shirt and dickie bow tie. Topped off with pearls I absolutely loved it. I started to actually enjoy my walks, especially my admirer stage right, a little boy in red who grinned and waved at me each time!
Post-show interview with Elle Osili for Mellow 9 Productions and home. Angel Sinclair is amazing, along with her right hand man James Lyon their promotion of diversity in fashion is inspiring. I met many lovely models, stylists, MUAs, hair ladies, helpers and even Gary the Bodyguard. Already I've got two new followers on Twitter and more fiends on Facebook. More photos will hopefully be posted soon.
Writing this from my sister's house in Azeitao, Portugal, I'm still wondering what the heck possessed me to delve into this world of personal websites and now a blog ... I think I can probably lay the blame at the feet of two inspirational ladies, Lara and Kayko.
Lara (Lara Livingstone @divasdelite) first became known to me when she wrote a brilliantly confidence-building review of my first fashion show for John Lewis in September 2011. We've stayed in cyberworld contact since and met in person at the second show in December.
Beautiful Kayko Andrieux has been my work mate at two recent shoots. She persuaded me that constructing a website via Weebly was really very simple ...
Was it simple? 'Ish' I guess. It probably took about an hour. I'm quite chuffed with the fledgling result though welcome suggestons for improvement. Will it be worth it? Who knows.
While I ponder the subject of the next post, I shall continue to enjoy the delights of Portuguese food and vinho tinto for the next few days!