As the world’s most stylish people descended upon Somerset House for London Fashion Week, the past week has seen London submerged in a sea of designer talent, supermodels and fashionistas. Recognised by a global audience, London Fashion Week is renowned for its edge, individuality and inventiveness. So we thought we’d take a look into how London Fashion Week has inspired the world of Food and Drink.
Shoe Bar at The Mayfair Hotel
Image via http://bit.ly/OsKS9V
Fall head over heels for London Fashion Week with iconic shoe inspired cocktails at The Mayfair Hotel. Effortlessly combining the two loves of any fashionista; their expert mixologists have unified six classic shoes with six classic cocktails. If you see yourself as the next Anna Wintour then think of The Devil Wears Prada and go for the Red Stiletto, a frozen raspberry vodka laced with cherry liqueur and charged with champagne. Or if you’re more of a Manolo Blahnik girl think of Carrie Bradshaw and indulge in the Strappy Sandal with the girls.
The Hummingbird Bakery backstage at Matthew Williamson
Image via http://on.fb.me/XX7hyO
Fashion loves a Cupcake and these pretty little treats never miss a chance to get in front of the camera often appearing in magazines and ad campaigns. This time however, they’ve been spotted mingling backstage at Matthew Williamson’s pre show at The Royal Opera House. Opting for Mini Delights, smaller (and of course lighter) cupcakes were devoured backstage in Williamson’s signature colours whilst red velvet, fought with chocolate and vanilla for the limelight.
Reed Krakoff for Laduree
Image via http://bit.ly/XOyO4G
It wouldn’t be fashion week without a collaboration. Following in the footsteps of Marni, Christian Louboutin, Lanvin and Matthew Williamson, Reed Krakoff has created an exclusive box of black chocolate Macaroons for Paris pattieserie Laduree. These simple yet stylish, matte black indulgences are a winner this season.
Molly Bakes fashion Inspired Cake Pops
Image via http://bit.ly/15MxvZB
Fancy taking a bite out of Karl Largerfeld or Donatella Versace. Well now you can with these fashion inspired Cake Pops. The pops are made of little balls of cake mixed with icing sugar dipped in candy and come fresh out of Molly’s East London Bakery. The range includes many faces of the fashion elite such as Victoria Beckham (quite literally is a head on a stick), Vivienne Westwood, Anna Wintour and Andre Leon Tally.
This week it’s all about design. I started thinking about design when a chunky envelope dropped through my letterbox, sadly not addressed to me but my housemate with a very funky invitation to the new British Design exhibition at the V&A (she works for the sponsor). Using what I’m told is a 3D lenticular print it showcases some of the best British design from the last 60 years or so. The invite gives the illusion of depth so when you view it from different angles, different images are magnified…everything from the good old British road sign to 70s punk culture. I like it so much we’ve stuck it up on the fridge. A great example of when a brilliantly designed invite becomes a keepsake (and a permanent reminder of the V&A!). And I’m going to the exhibition next weekend.
On a rainy bank holiday Monday, what better way to seek inspiration than unleashing your ‘inner showgirl’ and drooling over those iconic shoes with the red soles. Another of the on-trend retrospectives , this time it’s Christian Louboutin and a celebration of 20 years of shoe design at the Design Museum. Whilst the shadow theatre and hologram of Dita Von Teese dancing in her bejewelled Louboutin’s somewhat steal the show, his one-off fashion meets art designs are certainly thought provoking. A great example of putting two things you never expect together….everything from an 8 inch heel on a ballet shoe to a stiletto made from a fish.
Of course, great design isn’t just in the Museums. Last week I munched on tasty tacos next to a very cool cardboard cityscape at La Bodega Negra. From the people behind La Esquina in New York, this trendy, new eatery in the heart of Soho is hidden behind an unmarked door with neon signs advertising peep show and adult video. Find the man with the clipboard and (if you have a reservation) get ushered down into a cavernous space that the owner describes as “a private hacienda in the style of Luis Buñuel”. You can’t take photos of the cityscape so it’s worth a visit just to see it….and if it’s good enough for Kylie…
The fund management industry controls assets worth around $90 trillion worldwide. Deciding how to allocate this money is the task of a global industry that employs more than 50,000 people in the UK alone. Asset managers pride themselves on their ability to analyse their universe of potential investments, and for many it is this methodology or sector knowledge that separates them from the competition and secures their clients.
To communicate an investment strategy, fund managers use all manner of graphs and tables to illustrate performance and highlight the potential of their product but as Monday night’s edition of Newsnight (starting at 26 minutes) highlighted, our ability to represent complicated information is changing.
Presenter David Sillito uses examples such as the charismatic Hans Rosling’s lecture on population and life expectancy to illustrate the compelling nature of modern graphics.
The basic premise of the Newsnight feature is that as the quality and beauty of a presentation increases, so too does our likelihood to pay attention and retain the information.
There is clearly an opportunity for asset managers to use these kinds of graphics with clients and prospects, but also potentially with the media. The websites that serve the investment community have become more visually compelling, I’m thinking in particular of the Financial Times site and innovations such as Alphaville’s Tags graphic for example.
As sites like Citywire add new forms of content such as video, the media is working in partnership with fund managers to generate material. It is not hard to imagine a situation whereby fund mangers with graphics that shed new light on an investment trend could collaborate with media outlets to place their information and at the same time highlight their expertise in important media.
A few illustrations
The video graphic below shows the drop off in the number of flights during the peak of the volcanic ash chaos, but it could just as easily represent investment inflows to major financial markets.
Wheredoesmymoneygo.org looks at how the government is spending our taxes. A fixed income manager could produce something similar to highlight their beliefs about government spending policies and the outlook for the government’s bonds. An interactive version of the graphic below can be found on the website here.
HASTY EDIT – I published this and then realised that this was the 18th Web Curios. Web Curios is now of legal drinking age; should any of you fancy buying Web Curios a bottle of whisky (or meths of suitable vintage), please feel free. Thanks.
Another week down, another 7 days spent at work feeling like Sisyphus (if you’d prefer a visual representation of this, you can’t go wrong by clicking here). Yet again, it might be argued that I shouldn’t be writing this and should instead be knuckling down to some HARD GRAFT (for which phrase Google Images suggests this – proof positive that people who spend time on the internet have NO CONCEPT of what work actually means); those who hold that opinion, though, are ignoring the JOY that Web Curios brings to literally tens of webmongs across Soho. I am performing a public service, big bossman Richard Miller. Frankly I should be subsidised by the state – after all, there’s some extra cash knocking about these days.
Having said that, this is going to be the last Web Curios for a while as next Thursday I am going on HOLIDAY. Yes, I know that I have tried that before this year and failed spectacularly, but this time nothing can go wrong. I’m only going to Italy, for God’s sake *prays, fervently*. Before I embark upon my Roman holiday, though, have some things – oh, and for those of a sensitive disposition, please be assured that nothing in this week’s selection comes anywhere near to the creepiness of last week’s stuff. Which is a shame, frankly (there was a video of a Satanic mass, but I’m not quite sure how far I can test my employers’ patience at the moment). Enjoy, or don’t, but whatever you do DON’T HAVE NIGHTMARES.
Do you remember when you were at school and you would come in on a Monday after a haircut dreading the inevitable pisstaking from your classmates? I’ve been reminded of that this week. Anyone would think I had come into work having sprouted horns (not entirely unreasonable; remind me to tell you the story of when I sold my soul to Satan in exchange for good exam results one day), but no, all it is is that I now have short hair. For those of you who don’t know me, I now look like this:
Me, with a friend, yesterday
Whereas before I looked more like this:
Yahoo Serious. Younger readers will have no idea who this is. FIE ON YOU, YOUNGER READERS.
Anyway, enough of this crap. On with the web-related crap instead.
Hello, webmongs. Happy Friday and all that. As I write, it’s 11:52am and it would appear that EVERYONE on the internet is watching the Beyonce / Lady Gaga lipstick-lesbian product placement extravaganza (otherwise known as the promo for new single ‘Telephone‘). I’m not, though. I am slaving over a hot keyboard to bring you a random, disconnected bunch of rubbish from the internets. SEE MY STAKHANOVITE DEDICATION AND WONDER.
I won’t lie to you, webmongs, it’s been a week of tribulations – who knew babyfaced pop-moppet Mark Owen even had a penis, let alone that he was sharing it with people who weren’t his partner? Shocking. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaanyway, let’s get this thing started shall we? The sooner I crack on, the sooner I can start taking furtive sips from the bottle of advocaat I keep hidden under my desk.
SXSW and the ‘Check-In Wars’ – Ok, so ‘wars’ is maybe a little hyperbolic. Nonetheless. SXSW is a 9-day festival covering ‘interactive’, music and film, which takes place in Austin, Texas each year. Basically it’s a great big hipster / techy love-in, populated by the sort of people who only buy music that’s been endorsed by Pitchfork (full disclosure: I am a bit like that). The ‘interactive’ portion is all about new tech and innovation, and ‘features five days of compelling presentations from the brightest minds in emerging technology, scores of exciting networking events hosted by industry leaders and an unbeatable line up of special programs showcasing the best new websites, video games and startup ideas the community has to offer’. Apparently.
Anyway, this year the pre-festival buzz has centred on the growing competition between Foursquare and Gowalla, the two companies currently dominating the world of location-based mobile apps. In the unlikely event that you are reading this and don’t know what they are, read this.
Oh, and you may not believe that these things are ever going to catch on with real people (ie those who aren’t Soho-dwelling generic media wankers), but the fact that Facebook is set to also allow users to share their location should give you pause for thought. This stuff will go mainstream, honest.
AOL Launches ‘Lifestream’ – Another big trend for the coming months that trendspotters (people with sharp haircuts, sharper glasses and dust where their souls should be) have been banging on about of late is convergence – that is, a move towards integrating your different online platforms and identities in order to make them easier to manage. We’ve already seen this with Facebook, MySpace,LinkedIn, etc, all allowing you to synch your status updates with your Twitter account – AOL’s ‘Lifestream’ is an attempt to create a standalone platform that integrates feeds from ALL your social networks into one place. It’s an interesting concept – not sure if AOL has the clout to make it stick, but again something else which we’ll see more of in coming months.
ANOTHER social app: Plancast – This is worth knowing about, if only because it’s an interesting proposition. Rather than an app that lets you share what you are doing now, Plancast is designed to help you share what you will be doing in the future – basically a social planner app. Really simple, but there’s a gap for exactly that sort of service right now.
Lewis Hamilton’s Secret Life – What do you think Lewis Hamilton does in his spare time? Discusses Baudrillard with his suspiciously transgender-looking girlfriend? Contemplates the theoretical beauty of Euler’s Identity? Stares into space as lonely tears course down his cheeks? Nope, none of those. What he in fact does, according to the new Alternate Reality Game for Reebok which launched this week, is recover stolen artworks like some sort of masculine Lara Croft. I’m frankly puzzled by both the backstory and mechanic for this – I’m a fan of ARGs, but this use of Lewis feels a bit bolted on, frankly, and I’m still unclear as to the link back to the brand.
Attach Digital Content to Barcodes – Bit hard to explain, this, but bear with me. This service allows you to attach digital content to any barcode – that means that if someone scans the barcode with their smartphone, having downloaded the StickyBits app, their phone will automatically take them to the webpage associated to that barcode. So, for example, you could link the Lady Gaga video mentioned all the way up there to the barcode on the CD single – meaning anyone who scanned the barcode with their iPhone could watch the video immediately. Now think about the fact that you can create your own unique barcodes, link them to whatever you want, print them out, stick them to things…the possibilities are huge, particularly for guerilla marketing campaigns.