Blog

Archive: August 2014

FASHIONWEEK Fever Returns For Autumn


22 August 2014

Now a regular on the style schedule, West Coast Cooler FASHIONWEEK continued its ten year celebrations with the launch on 21 August 2014 of one of event’s the busiest and best programmes yet.  With three nights of catwalk shows, plus Sushi Saturday, Style Sunday and Fashion Friday all to look forward to between 15-19 October, as well as a charity showing of Mean Girls the movie, event director Cathy Martin also announced a change of venue to a fantastic converted warehouse in Bruce Street in the heart of the city.

Speaking at the launch, director Cathy Martin said: “Showcasing the best of our local designers and independent boutiques as well as international high street names, this autumn the catwalk will be a sea of colour, style and must-have fashion. We’re loving the blue hues, the coral reds, the plaid and the glorious glitter trends, as well as sharp suiting and oversized coats in terms of the season’s silhouettes.

“Our new move allows us the space to welcome a pop up sushi and cocktail bar from the fashionista’s favourite eaterie Zen, as well as play host to our new ‘shop the show’ boutique alley where show goers can browse and buy on-trend fashion and accessories from the shows over sushi and sumptuous cocktails, both before and after the runway presentations.”

Karen Anderson, brand manager for West Coast Cooler, which sponsors the event, added: “It’s that time of year again and it’s going to be another very busy season of show-stopping fashion, as well as lots of fun off the runway too. It’s hard to believe that we’re continuing on with the ten year celebrations - and with it, the wonderful collaboration that is FASHIONWEEK and West Coast Cooler - so we were very pleased to announce today that we’re renewing our sponsorship agreement for at least a further three years.”

FASHIONWEEK officially opens with a charity showing of “MEAN GIRLS” THE MOVIE in association with Odyssey Cinemas and in support of breast cancer awareness month and local charity Pretty n Pink, whose founder Noleen Adair sadly passed away earlier this year. Like FASHIONWEEK, Mean Girls celebrates ten years this year, and the Wednesday showing is for a reason, as the Mean Girls mantra is ‘on Wednesdays we wear pink’. Noeleen McErleane, from Pretty in Pink said: “Noleen Adair would have loved this event – a fun night out to celebrate being a woman while raising money for those whose very womenhood is often snatched from them by breast cancer. In Noleen’s honour, and in support of breast cancer awareness month, we’d love it if everyone could wear pink to the show.”

Following on from this worthy start, Ireland’s largest online retailer www.excelclothing.comthen kicks off catwalk proceedings on Thursday 16October, bringing top designer names such as Armani, Calvin Klein and Boss Orange to the Belfast FASHIONWEEK runway, as well as some great British fashion brands including Hunter, Belstaff, French Connection, Ted Baker and Dr Marten’s for both men and ladies.

On Friday 17 October, FASHIONWEEK’s new event FASHION FRIDAY will see Skype’s global fashion ambassador and international fashion vlogger Sonya Esman, plus Ireland’s ‘So Sue Me’ blogger Suzanne Jackson as well as local blog success story Tiffany Brien, (AKA Peanut Butter Girl) in a bloggers’ Q&A as the girls impart their style secrets and blogging success… With a combined Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter audience of around two million users, these ladies know a thing or two about capturing the fashion world’s attention.

Autumn/winter looks from independent boutiques and local designers will grace the catwalk at the main show later that evening, and will see the return of popular stores including Blush, Goddess & Swift, Diamond Dolls and Jourdan as they showcase their collections alongside local designers Lizzie Agnew, Katie Wilson, Julia Sokele, Grannie Maher, Nor Lisa, Marie Claire Millinery, Melanie Bond Jewellery and Gordon Donaldson to name but a few.

The style proceedings continue at Sushi Saturday ‘The Director’s Cut’ at Shiro. Jane Hodges from Shiro explains:  “We’re calling it the alternative to afternoon tea – it’s low on carbs and clotted cream, and high on fun, fashion and Asian fusion. Working with the BFW style team, Director Cathy Martin will choose the top 36 looks from across all shows and bring them together over cocktails, sushi and style talks from everyone’s favourite stylist (and Cool FM presenter) Rebecca McKinney. So it’s a bit of sushi while you schmooze, fashion while you feast, or a catch up while you catwalk. Whatever way you describe it, this is the perfect afternoon out for the girls. Tickets are priced at £25 per person including a welcome cocktail and sushi platter (all dietary requirements catered for) as well as the show, so we feel it’s a perfect addition to the FASHIONWEEK programme.”

Then the High Street show on Saturday 18 October brings the hottest looks from the nation’s biggest and busiest stores including Next, M&S, Superdry, DV8, Phase Eight, Warehouse, Oasis, Jigsaw, Karen Millen, and, from CastleCourt, there’ll also be Designers at Debenhams, GAP, Dorothy Perkins, New Look and Miss Selfridge plusa range of discounted high street lines from The Outlet in Banbridge including Next clearance, L.K. Bennett, Olsen and Staccato among others, with fashion that’s fun, affordable and available right now. George at ASDA will also showcase a collection of new season looks including blue hues and plenty of plaid.

Last, but definitely not least, the city’s most stylish event will close in sumptuous style with the flagship Style Sunday luncheon at SHU. This season, the event is being run in association with LIDL and is once again in support of Mencap NI. The afternoon gives guests an up-close-and-personal look at stunning fashions from local designers over a delicious three course lunch which features the very best of local produce and seasonal ingredients. Make-up artist Paddy McGurgan and stylists from FASHIONWEEK hair partner Peter Mark will also impart tips and tricks as well as host a mini masterclass on how to look fantastic throughout the winter. The lunch and show costs £45 per person and bookings at SHU are expected to fill quickly as usual.

Jasmine O’Brien, LIDL Northern Ireland, said: As a local retailer, LIDL Northern Ireland is proud to be sponsoring Style Sunday at this season’s FASHIONWEEK. Style Sunday is the perfect close to an iconic five days of fashion and style and we’re delighted to be associated with the local staple in its tenth year.”

Peter Wilkinson from Peter Mark, FASHIONWEEK’s hair partner this season, said:“As one of Northern Ireland’s best known and longest established hairdressing groups, Peter Mark is delighted to be the official hair stylist for this season’s FASHIONWEEK. Perfect hair styling is an integral part of achieving show-stopping catwalk looks and our team of experts, including our ‘Masters of Hair’, who excel in areas of style, cutting, colour and trend are looking forward to showcasing the autumn/winter hair trends for the upcoming season throughout the week. We’re also busy planning our exclusive insights into the latest cutting-edge styles and colours for Style Sunday  to keep clients one step ahead and fashion forward.”

The full show schedule is available online at www.belfastfashionweek.com along with details of this season’s trends plus links to all participant retailers and sponsors. The most fashionable tickets in town are priced at £20 or £25 for FROW and are available by calling 028 9024 6609 or via the website (where you’ll also find details of the movie night, Sushi Saturday at Shiro and LIDL Style Sunday at SHU). All ticket prices include a fabulous goodie bag and a refreshing West Coast Cooler.

Stars in the making?


11 August 2014

Gold Star winners in this year's UK Great Taste awards are due to be announced today, with Northern Ireland food and drink firms likely to be among the recipients.  Staff at artisan coffee roaster Bailies Coffee, which has just moved to a custom-built storage and roasting plant in south Belfast, are among those eagerly anticipating further wins, having already collected 27 gold stars in the past.  The stars recognise and reward great tasting food and drinks products from artisan producers across the UK, and Bailies business development manager Ross Kane said: "Our customers across the island of Ireland remind us all the time that we have a great product, but it is reassuring to know that experts from the industry have appreciated what we do in terms of selecting the world's highest grade beans and freshly roasting great-tasting coffee here in Belfast. We're hopeful that this year's awards will bring some new stars to our collection."  Also pictured are sales executive Karen Gillespie, barista trainer Julia McKenna and roastery assistan Stephen Houston.

Latest News
News Archive