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Last week Sherene was lucky enough to attend the British Fashion Awards at the prestigious London theatre the Coliseum. We caught up with her to learn more about her experience from attending the show.
What did you enjoy most about the show?
I particularly enjoyed the whole glamour of the experience.
I was also inspired by the building itself which is over 100 years old and had a fantastic view on the upper balcony towards the middle looking down at the tables full of the prize winners and celebrities. It is hard to describe how breathtaking and visually striking the Victorian inspired, Edwardian architecture of the building is and I truly felt that a building such as this was a suitable venue to house some of the most talented fashion designers in the world. They had removed all of the seating that is traditionally in place at the Coliseum and instead filled the area with tables and a raised platform in the middle with a podium where the winners of each award were announced. The platform had a walkway leading off back towards the seating area.
What were your expectations before going?
This was my first experience at the show so my expectations were based on what I had read and heard from other people. I knew that Natalie Massenet was the ‘new blood’ of the British Fashion Council having taken over as chairman in 2013 and she had turned the awards in to a big event. She had increased the reputation of London as a fashion hub and made the awards in to something special. Natalie was named Women of the Year by Glamour magazine in 2013 and I feel that she really deserved this because she has given people who aren’t as established in the fashion industry more opportunity to attend the awards.
Did your experience exceed your expectations?
The show well exceeded my expectations. It was completely inspirational. I saw people that were nominated for awards who started out just as I have. It showed me that there are no limits. One brand that really caught my eye for two reasons was Jewellery designers Yunus and Eliza. I admire them because they have used their heritage to drive the inspiration behind their designs, and because they individually handcraft all of their pieces which make each piece more special. My designs are inspired by my South African heritage and I feel that every one of my handbags is unique from each other. Yunus & Eliza have received notable recognition within the fashion industry and have been featured regularly in Vogue and Elle magazines. Our approach to fashion design is similar and if they can receive this level of recognition then there is nothing to stop me from doing the same, and that is why I found them so inspiring.
Who did you see at the show?
I saw Kylie Minogue, Rihanna, the Beckhams, Kate Moss, Cara Delevingne and Anna Wintor the editor of Vogue who made a really fantastic speech which begun with a standing ovation, (below there is a video of the speech). The show was hosted by Jack Whitehall so I obviously saw him as well.
(Source: London Fashion Council YouTube)
Would you attend the show again?
Yes absolutely. Next year hopefully I’ll be on one of the tables myself!
What did you wear to the show?
I wore a SHERENE MELINDA royal blue Haupt Bag, oh, and complimented this with a black evening gown.
Are there any lasting impressions from the show?
Other than feeling very inspired, the show has also reminded me of the importance of London as a main fashion hub. London is home to some of the greatest events in fashion such as London Fashion Week and is considered the fashion capital of the world after New York, reminding me it is the perfect place to start a fashion business.
These sentiments were echoed by various attendees, with Karlie Kloss stating that, 'British fashion is so influential around the world and it's a real breeding ground for talent', and Anna Wintour reminding us that the British fashion industry has 'always been supportive of risk-taking and creativity'.
The British Fashion Awards are one of the industry’s most popular events with multiple celebrities in attendance, all adorned in the stunning designs of Stella McCartney, Erdem, Alexander McQueen and Julien Macdonald. They included Harry Styles, Emma Watson, Kendall Jenner, Pixie Geldof, Ellie Goulding, Alexa Chung and Rita Ora. There were also many fashion models in attendance including Karlie Kloss, Liya Kebede, Joan Smalls, Suki Waterhouse and Karolína Kurková. And of course there were many industry figureheads there including Tom Ford, Nicolas Ghesquière, Mario Testino, Naomi Campbell, and Anna Wintour. It is no wonder that Sherene felt inspired!
Below is a picture of Victoria Beckham receiving the award for best brand. There is a full list of the winners listed underneath the photo.
The 2014 British Fashion Awards Winners:
Emerging womenswear designer: Marques Almeida
Emerging menswear designer: Craig Green
Emerging accessory designer: Prism
Red carpet designer: Alexander McQueen
Model: Cara Delevingne
Special recognition award: Chris Moore
Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator: Edward Enninful
International designer: Nicolas Ghesquière
Outstanding achievement award: Anna Wintour
Creative Campaign: Louis Vuitton
New establishment designer: Simone Rocha
Establishment designer: Preen
Brand: Victoria Beckham
British style award: Emma Watson
Accessory designer: Anya Hindmarch
Menswear designer: J.W Anderson
Womenswear designer: Erdem