Monthly Archives: September 2013

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Stars Come Out In Style In Aid Of Stephen Lawrence

Emeli Sande, Jessie J and Rita Ora joined Stephen Lawrence’s mother Doreen to lead a host of Britain’s best musical talent to the stage of the O2 Arena for a concert for a very special cause – the UNITY charity and the Stephen Lawrence Foundation. It was emotional at times as the acts paid tribute to Stephen, who was just 18 when he was stabbed at killed at a bus stop in London 20 years ago. The acts begged people to stop carrying knives and to remember that life is short… and the night ended up becoming a celebration of life.

Male acts Rizzle Kicks, Ed Sheeran, Labrinth and Plan B provided a role model for the guys in the audience while the girls could look to inspiration from the strong solo female vocalists on stage. It was all quite empowering. Even the outfits the ladies wore were empowering. These are my personal highlights from the night:

 

Beverley Knight’s soulful voice sounded incredible – she has a voice that is made for big arenas. Her leggings sparkled under all the lights and she’s actually wearing a pair you can get at Very – the South sequin leggings!

Ellie Goulding showed off a really slender frame and told me it was because she had been attending gym sessions at Barry’s Bootcamp in North London, which burns 1000 calories a session. Check out her legs in her cute black shorts:

And finally, I loved Rita Ora’s mish-mash multi-colour outfit. Matching things are so boring! What I also liked about Rita being at the gig is she only arrived from Las Vegas that morning. She really works hard for causes she believes in. I think the colour may even be helping to wake her up – if I’m tired I need a bit of brightness in my life any way I can get it.

This is just one of many events taking place from now until December to mark the 20th anniversary of Stephen Lawrence’s tragic death. Of course, I’ll bring you reports of any other celeb events that take place and the guests that attend. And in the meantime, I’ll be taking a lesson from the celebs and thinking that the future is bright and that life’s too short to carry knives.

Love Zoex

PS For more celebrity and fashion news see my showbiz lifestyle blog Live Like a VIP

mtv_stayingalive_22

The Bjorn Borg brand & MTV’s Staying Alive Foundation

Björn Borg is an iconic Swedish tennis player who’s unique style and rock-star qualities inspired the creation of the Björn Borg brand in 1984. Nowadays Björn Borg is an international fashion brand with a focus on colourful fashion underwear, sportswear, bags, footwear, eyewear and fragrances.

This season Bjorn Borg have collaborated with MTV Staying Alive Foundation (stayingalivefoundation.org) to launch the limited edition ‘GET IT ON’ pant. This special product has a limited edition waistband and features a print inspired by “Shunga”, an erotic painting style from Japan. One Euro from every product sold goes to the foundation’s fight against aids which affects young men and women around the world.

 

 

The brands new collection was launched at an exclusive charity event at East London’s Truman Brewery venue with a focus on the ‘GET IT ON’ collaboration. The celeb packed fashion show closed with a zip wire stunt where MTV presenter Becca Dudley and model boyfriend Jay Hiest were entwined in the limited edition unisex ‘GET IT ON’ tandem pant which has plenty of room for two.

 

Check out the new Bjorn Borg AW13 men’s styles including the kamasutra print ‘GET IT ON’ pant now available in Irish Green on very.co.uk.

 

lisa-binky

Reality TV Stars Party In Leather At Leo ‘The Lion’ Ihenacho’s Gig

Fashion and music are my two favourite things in the world so it was great to witness the two of them side by side at the solo gig of Leo ‘The Lion’ Ihenacho in London. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Leo, you may know his band The Streets, which he was in with Mike Skinner. The group had their first number one in 2004 with Dry Your Eyes and since then went on to achieve several platinum singles like A Grand Don’t Come For Free’ and ‘The Hardest Way To Make An Easy Living’. Now, almost 10 years, later he has decided to have a solo career and determined to make it a success, he invited a few familiar faces to his gig at the O2 Academy in London.

Lisa Maffia from So Solid Crew, who appeared in a series of Celebrity Big Brother, rocked it up in leather trousers (above left) while Made In Chelsea star Binky Felstead made her leather trousers more clubby with an orange top. It was a busy night in London as before Leo’s gig, the Made in Chelsea cast were all at the five star Sanctum Hotel in London to raise a glass to cast-mate Spencer Matthews new book, Confessions of A Chelsea Boy. At that party were MiC’s Andy Jordan and Victoria Barker-Harbord (below) – also in leather – with Victoria rocking a stunning leather jacket that is very similar to the Definitions embossed leather jacket. It’s all about the detail on the back so you make an entrance when you leave as well as when you arrive.

I think I need to get some Definitions PU trousers for my next gig night out as I went for a shorts look to congratulate Leo after the gig. Leo’s album Big Trouble in London is out now and he exclusively revealed to me he’s got a lot more gigs lined up to promote it. Check out Leo’s website for more details.

 

Meanwhile Lisa Maffia has moved into music management and has signed a new three piece guy band called The Clef Truants. They’re good looking boys with soul and they’re just one of a few groups Lisa is working with to take them from performing to their friends to chart success like she’s had. Watch this space!

Love Zoex

PS For more celebrity and fashion news, check out my entertainment lifestyle blog Live Like A VIP

abbey-collage

Celebrity Style Steal: Abbey Clancy’s Glam Night Out

We’re going to be seeing a lot more of Abbey Clancey soon as Strictly Come Dancing starts again on Saturday and Abbey’s cha-cha-cha-ing with fit 23 year old pro dancer Aljaz Skorjanec. It’s hard to predict who will do well in the BBC show, but I am sure Abbey’s in with a fantastic chance. She showed she was in great shape as she went for a night out in London after dance practise one evening. Her legs are to die for!

While we can’t all have Abbey’s long legs, we can use clothes to make our body appear more in proportion. A waist length jacket that stops at the waist will lengthen legs as they appear to stop at the waist, not the hip. For a jacket like Abbey’s try the Definitions jacquard jacket and emphasise this leg lengthening effect even more with black leggings. I can’t really see what’s under Abby’s jacket but it’s some kind of black top. I like the Definitions layered lace kimono top to flash a hint of cleavage and make the outfit more girly. The finishing touches are the boots and for that check out the Myleene Klass Julie suede fashion boots and then the last piece is the animal print clutch bag. How wild is that bag? She could hit one of the Strictly judges over the head with it if they give her a low score.

Who do you think will win Strictly? Something tells me Abbey won’t give up without a fight.

PS For more celebrity and fashion news check out my showbiz lifestly blog Live Like a VIP

laura-whtmore

Exclusive Interview: Laura Whitmore Rocks Out The Macmillan Charity Art Auction

Laura Whitmore is one of my fashion icons and she pulled it out the bag yet again when I saw her at the Royal College of Art a fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support. The TV presenter was entertaining guests with a two hour DJ set (which is a long time when it comes to DJing) but she looked fresh faced from the beginning to end in a classic maxi dress with a black leather jacket. I think it was the jacket that transformed the look from party girl to rock chick. Here’s a full view:

I had a chat with Laura at the event, firstly finding out what she was up to right now. ‘I’m filming some adverts for MTV news, then I have some fashion work and then I have to start thinking about the new series of I’m A Celebrity,’ the busy star revealed. Does she have any fashion tips? ‘Now the weather is changing, it’s important to layer and have a coat otherwise you will get ill,’ was her sensible advice. And finally, what about art – was she tempted to buy? ‘I have actually bid for two paintings,’ she confessed. Well, it was for charity I guess. That’s a good excuse to spend money, right?

The event attracted a few glamorous guests with classical music star Katherine Jenkins (below left) and Donna Air (below right) showing us how to mix a black top and skirt. Both skirts are quite wild, aren’t they? Katherine has just got back from safari in South Africa so there’s a reason for her zebra print skirt.

Actress Kara Tointon looked very classy in a black dress. She’s come a long way since Eastenders! She told me she had plans to do another West End show, but she wouldn’t turn down a movie role if it became available. If she puts her mind to it, she’ll get it. Not many people could make a simple black dress look that good.

The event, which is now in it’s 7th year, raised around £200,000 for charity through selling works of world famous artists including Mary McCartney, Rankin, Gavin Turk and Pandemonia. Not bad for a night out!

Love Zoex

PS For more celebrity and fashion news see my showbiz gossip and lifestyle blog Live Like A VIP

100yrs1

Our Fabulous New Fashion App

Ever wondered how the drain pipe jeans of the 60s became the must-have skinny jeans of today, or how the little black dress managed to transcend eras and become a timeless classic? Well wonder no more.

To mark the end of London Fashion Week, we’ve launched our fabulous new ‘100 Years of Fashion’ app. With 10 decades of info charting the hottest trends and biggest influencers, it’s your must-have guide to fashion through the ages.

Just visit our  ‘100 Years of Fashion’ app, select a decade and then click an image to discover everything you need to know about the pieces that defined the generations.

Dyson Blog

WIN a DYSON BUNDLE worth over £500

***competition now closed*** It took 15 years and 5000 prototypes for Dyson to launch their first ever vacuum cleaner. Within 22 months it became the best-selling cleaner in the UK. Today, Dyson is a premium household name with every home owner aspiring to own Dyson’s top performing an award winning products.

This week Very launched the Dyson trade in campaign. For the next 6 weeks you can trade in any old vacuum cleaner and receive up to 30% off a shiny new Dyson model (excludes sticks and handhelds) 

To celebrate this offer, you could be in with a chance of winning a range of chic, sleek Dyson products including the high performance Dyson DC41 Upright Vacuum! The DC41 is a fantastic top of the range product, great for all round dirt & pet hair removal, not to mention steering into those hard to reach places!

And that’s not all; we’ll be sending you all the accessories you need to whip your house into shape for winter! With the help of accessories like the groom tool & the Dyson dusting brush there’ll be no spots left untouched!

 To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer the following question;

Question: What date does the trade in offer end?

 

Terms and Conditions

1. Entry into the draw will be deemed as acceptance of these rules and any separate instructions for entry will form part of the rules.

2. This prize draw is open to any UK resident, aged 18 or over, who is invited to participate by Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited and who leaves a comment answering the question.

3. Employees of Shop Direct Group companies and anyone else involved in the operation of the draw are excluded from entering. Closing date is midnight 4th October 2013.

4. Responsibility cannot be accepted for entries lost, damaged, delayed or spammed.

5. Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited reserves the right to offer an alternative prize in the event of the original prize being unavailable.  Prizes are non-negotiable, non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.

6. The draw will be made by random selection from all valid entries before midnight on 04.10.13.  There will be 1 winner to receive a Dyson Bundle worth over £500 featuring: Dyson DC41 Animal Upright – 9DHN2 £399, Dyson Groom Tool – PB096 £45.00, Dyson Flexi Crevice Tool – PB234- £25.00, Dyson Soft Dusting Brush – PB233- £25.00, X 2 Dyson Dysolve Spot Cleaner – 373LA – £10 each . There is no cash alternative and prizes are stock dependant. If we do not receive a response within 7 days we will choose another winner.

7. If you have a Shop Direct Group home shopping account that is in arrears at the time of the draw, you will not be eligible to win.

8. By entering the draw, entrants agree that their details may be disclosed to anyone requesting a list of prize winners. The winner may be required to take part in any publicity relating to this promotion.

9. The competition can be withdrawn at any time and Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited does not accept liability for any cancelled events.

10. Promoter: Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited, First Floor, Skyways House, Speke Road, Speke, Liverpool, L70 1AB. Registered No 466328

11. The promoter reserves the right to exclude any entries which it suspects might not be legitimate e.g. multiple entries, entries linked to the creation of multiple or false email accounts, entries originating out of inappropriate solicitations. Maximum of 1 prize per household.

 

 

kids animal print

Kids Fashion Trend: Fun and Feisty Leopard Print!

The season’s animal print trend has been scaled down and sweetened up for tiny trendsetters and stylish teens.  From gorgeously girly dresses and glamorous coats to cute tops and comfortable leggings, this timeless trend brings roaring fashion credentials to your kids’ clothing.

While there are numerous prints to choose from – snake skin, zebra stripes and various cutesy creatures such as cats, dogs, foxes and mice – nothing says classic animal print more so than leopard spots. Perfect for giving her casual and special occasion outfits a feisty fashionable finish, leopard print immediately lifts a look to reflect her fun, lively nature.

To help you make a spot-on selection, take a look at my favourite animal print picks from the fabulous Ladybird, Freespirit and Cool Candy by Coleen collections at Very

 

Kids leopard print fashion trend AW13

Ladybird – the go-to brand for top quality baby and kids clothing has gone ultra stylish with the season’s serving of animal print fashion. 

  1. Perfect for her pretty party look, this girls puffball dress has instant adorable style.
  2. Give her a taste of finer fashion with this sumptuous girls faux fur coat – complete with dainty bow detail to the top.
  3. This cute girls cardigan is guaranteed to make her little heart flutter!
  4. The basic girls skinny jean has been revived with an animal print design.
  5. She will step out in style in these girls patent bow ballerinas.
  6. This leopard print girls jumper dress comes complete with tiger stripe sleeves for an extra eye-catching effect.

 

Kids leopard print fashion trend AW13

Freespirit – from fashion-forward toddlers to trend-conscious teens, Freespirit girls clothing includes fun and bubbly party dresses, staple styles and casual basics. 

  1. With a cute tailored look, this girls peplum blazer has animal print cuffs and lining – giving a smart classic cut personality.
  2. This girls prom dress has a flattering girly silhouette that can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.
  3. Animal print adds definition to the collar on this girls dropped waist little black dress.
  4. She will love the stand-out style of these leopard print girls Chelsea boots.
  5. Add a pop of patent to her outfit with these girls ballet pumps.
  6. Hood ears and a vintage-inspired swing shape make this girls faux fur coat a fun and snug selection.

Kids leopard print fashion trend AW13

Cool Candy by Coleen – the exclusive collection by Coleen Rooney for Very features a seriously stylish selection of feisty fashion for little ladies. 

  1. Combining style and comfort, this 2 pack of animal print girls leggings is a must-have for her staple wardrobe.
  2. This fun girls playsuit translates well throughout the seasons and can be layered with tights and a chunky knit for snuggly winter warmth.
  3. With a sequin bow on one and tiered frill layers on the other, this 2 pack of girls long-sleeved tops has adorableness in abundance.
  4. She will love the heart-shaped buttons on this sweet little girls cardigan.
  5. This cream girls faux fur jacket is made to be matched with leopard print.

What about bouncy babies?

For more arrrrr than raaaaa, take a look at this cuter than cute baby girls animal print all in one and headband set from Ladybird

 

animal print baby

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

cate1

Exclusive Interview: Cate Blanchett At Blue Jasmine Premiere

Care Blanchett is one of the actresses who is instantly recognisable. The combination of her flawless pale skin, striking ginger hair and tall, thin boyish figure are part of her A’list image and you can tell she is comfortable with herself. This comfort translates into confidence and as she walked the red carpet at the Blue Jasmine premiere today she looked absolutely amazing in a black maxi dress with jewell embellishment. It made her look even more statuesque than she is naturally.

I asked Cate about her fashion choices and about the film, which is directed by the legendary Woody Allen. This is what she said:

QS: Who are your fashion role models?

CATE: “Tilda [Swinton] always looks fantastic. And I love Gwyneth Paltrow when she dresses up. I think she’s stunning,”

QS: You had your premiere during London Fashion Week so you saw some shows first – what did you think?

CATE: ‘I wish I had more time here. It’s absolutely fantastic. I’ve been to as many shows as I can. I wish I could squeeze in more.’

QS: How would you describe your sense of style?

CATE: ‘I don’t’ dress for anyone else. I like clothes that make a statement. I go for power and strength.’

QS: Did you like the costumes in the film?

CATE: ‘I got to wear some amazing clothes when I was playing the Upper East side Princess character – beautiful jackets and trousers. But then my character was destitute and had no money so it was a real challenge.’

QS: How did you find working with Woody Allen?

CATE: ‘I think he absolutely loves women in all their mad, complex, crazy, hilarious glory. And as a dramatist he’s created some of the most memorable female characters on screen. It was amazing.’

The premiere took place in pouring rain but Cate brightened up everyone that she spoke to. Blue Jasmine is at cinemas nationwide on 27 September.

Love Zoex

PS For more showbiz and fashion news check out my celebrity lifestyle blog Live Like a VIP.

bio

WIN! A Body Perfect bundle worth £200!

***This competition has now closed*** This summer has been a hot one and the only thing hotter has been the celeb bodies on display, so Bio-Synergy have rounded up the best “hot” products that celebs have been using over the summer months to get beach body perfect. They include some of the hottest US products such as raspberry ketones, green coffee, African mango, white kidney beans and Paleo Diet protein.

Rumour has it that Kim Kardashian is a fan of the paleo diet, both J’Lo & Demi Moore & Katy Perry are said to be fans of Green Coffee & Green Tea, and Oprah Winfrey & Beyonce are said to be fans of Raspberry Ketones!

Not only have these products received great reviews, but they are all natural so are the perfect supplement to accompany a healthy lifestyle and keep you looking great throughout the autumn. What’s more, use alongside a healthy eating and exercise plan they can contribute significantly toward quick and considerable weight loss.

 

COMPETITION:

We have secured a Body Perfect bundle for one lucky reader, worth over £200!

To enter, comment below and tell us –

Which celebrity’s physique do you admire the most?

Terms & Conditions

1. Entry into the draw will be deemed as acceptance of these rules and any separate instructions for entry will form part of the rules.

2. This prize draw is open to any UK resident, aged 18 or over, who is invited to participate by Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited and who leaves a comment answering the question.

3. Employees of Shop Direct Group companies and anyone else involved in the operation of the draw are excluded from entering. Closing date is midnight 26th September 2013.

4. Responsibility cannot be accepted for entries lost, damaged, delayed or spammed.

5. Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited reserves the right to offer an alternative prize in the event of the original prize being unavailable.  Prizes are non-negotiable, non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.

6. The draw will be made by random selection from all valid entries before 30.09.13.  There will be 1 winner to receive a Body Perfect bundle worth £200 each.  If we do not receive a response within 7 days we will choose another winner.

7. If you have a Shop Direct Group home shopping account that is in arrears at the time of the draw, you will not be eligible to win.

8. By entering the draw, entrants agree that their details may be disclosed to anyone requesting a list of prize winners. The winner may be required to take part in any publicity relating to this promotion.

9. The competition can be withdrawn at any time and Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited does not accept liability for any cancelled events.

10. Promoter: Shop Direct Home Shopping Limited, First Floor, Skyways House, Speke Road, Speke, Liverpool, L70 1AB. Registered No 466328

11. The promoter reserves the right to exclude any entries which it suspects might not be legitimate e.g. multiple entries, entries linked to the creation of multiple or false email accounts, entries originating out of inappropriate solicitations. Maximum of 1 prize per household.

AJO

Exclusive guest post: TV Presenter AJ Odudu!

I’ve always been a fan of Very.co.uk. It combines much of what I love in life: stylish fashion, affordable prices, delivered straight to my door so no need to get up off the sofa or out of my jim jams. It’s win win!

I also love to dress up (any excuse will do). I’ve just completed my debut run presenting Channel 5’s Big Brother‘s Bit On the Side and what better excuse to dress to the nines than on live TV. As an official sponsor of the show, Very gave me no holds barred access to their latest collection and what a treat that was. My favourites are below.

With Big Brother over there’s been no time to commiserate. Why? Because it’s London Fashion Week! This heralds the return of the Very collection and I joined the likes of Gemma Cairney and Ashley Roberts at Fearne Cotton’s fashion show at the beautiful Claridges Hotel in London.

The celebs were there by the bucket load too. The beautiful Dionne Bromfield, McFly, Wretch 32, Lawson and Stooshe looked incredible. One of the girls wore a AQ/AQ dress in cream, the same dress I wore for Celebrity Big Brother finale night. As for me, I wore a black jumpsuit from the Very Definitions range. I wore this on BBBOTS too (don’t worry I washed it first) and I never usually repeat outfits to events but I thought, “forget the rules- if you like it, wear it” and that’s what I did. I changed my hair, changed my accessories and voila! A whole new look with the very same jumpsuit. Versatile or what?

After photo’s, drinks and canapé reception the show began and boy was it a show. It was kicked off by a new music act called Chloe Howl who oozed pop cool and then frock after frock hit the runway and they were all beautiful. The collection is right up my street with combinations of bright mini dresses, stunning maxis and playful prints.

So with the show done and dusted, so too is my shopping list for the next season. Thank you VERY much.

 

(Follow AJ on Twitter for all her latest news!)

WINNER YCN

YCN STUDENT AWARDS: THE GOSS, THE GLAMOUR & THE PRIZES!

Lovin’ the idea of putting a real, raw and youthful approach at the heart of the Very’s talent hub, we joined the likes of Ugg and Yahoo to partner up with YCN (a cool members network for creatives) and come up with a live brief for a new, exciting and empowering visionary project.

 

This fashion-focused task went out as an open invitation to students asking them to devise a campaign or concept that decodes style events throughout the year. A phenomenal response and our best Simon Cowell impersonation later (minus the err, questionable haircut and trews) we commended Elizabeth Tyrer, Natcha Charoenrath and Chloe Sharp as our ones to watch before donning our glad rags and heading to the swish awards do!

YCN sure threw one heck of a party, shining spotlight on emerging stars at their super glamourous (and ultra gold!) awards ceremony in London. Held at the glitteringly decked out Marriott Grosvenor Square, a showcase of future design innovators and artistic talent stepped up to receive a bevy of much-deserved recognition. So, you can imagine our excitement (it went a little something like this…eeeeeeep!) when one of our commended students, Chloe bagged the top prize – Student of the Year Award!

Chloe Sharp #Winning! Plus just how lovely did she look in a vintage-inspired geo print dress and a good ol’ slick of red lippy? Girl got style!

Still in search of that all-important big break but no stranger to the fast-paced industry having interned at Company and Cosmopolitan, Chloe’s ‘Style Mixer’ idea for Very showed great understanding and appeal with a fresh concept that would allow customers to pick ‘n’ mix items according to body shape, style preferences and personal taste – awesome right? Check out more here.

We had a good old chit-chat with the LOVELY Chloe who said, “We were given the opportunity to chose a YCN brief as part of a University module and the Very brief immediately stood out to me. With a desire to work in the fashion industry I knew that this would be a great way to exercise my creative skills to create a project with weight for my portfolio.”

She then went onto say “The basic concept of the ‘Style Mixer’ was inspired by mix and match childrens books as I felt that this was an innovative way to explore options and choices within fashion. In an attempt to cross all platforms I designed an app using this aesthetic, mirrored with a print version that could also be brought to life digitally. The ‘Style Mixer’ allows Very customers to mix and match items according to their specific body shape as well as personal tastes and preferences, they are then given the opportunity to share these looks with friends and family through social media. Constantly aware of echoing Very’s brand values I also devised an idea for an adshel campaign with energy and character to speak to the Very audience. I thoroughly enjoyed this brief and I was overjoyed to hear of my commendation and I am still in awe at being named ‘Student of the Year’. The award has been a real boost to my confidence and I’m sure will open a lot of doors!” 

Don’t you just LOVE her? We were all absolutely thrilled for Chloe and want to offer up a big congrats to everyone involved. Read more about this great platform for fresh-faced creatives to share and develop talent here.