West Coast Cooler Belfast FASHIONWEEK SS'13 Press Launch!!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Friday 25th January, with it's sub zero temperatures and constant rain may still have felt like winter, but Spring was in full swing as press and fashionista's gathered at Belfast's Ulster Museum for the launch of this season's Spring/Summer '13 West Coast Cooler FASHIONWEEK!!!

Now in it's fifteenth season, Belfast FASHIONWEEK remains the hottest show in town when it comes to all things glamorous and fashionable, and as someone who has attended most of those shows over the past nine years I can honestly say that FASHIONWEEK remains one of my highlights of the year!

As we enjoyed a wonderful continental breakfast I caught up with my fellow fashionistas and friends within the industry, whilst as checking out everyone's fabulous outfits!! The launch marks the countdown to THE fashion event of the season and there was a real sense of excitement in the room as we waited to hear about the upcoming shows!

Director of FASHIONWEEK, Cathy Martin began by revealing the exciting news that FASHIONWEEK is moving it's key catwalk shows to a new home, the iconic Ulster Museum in Botanic Gardens! The contemporary and minimalist atrium at the historic building will be transformed into a fashion haven as hundreds of fashion fans gather in March to celebrate all things style! This is not to be missed!

The always stylish Cathy Martin, wearing this season's hottest trend: florals then talked us through some of the looks that will be sashaying down the FASHIONWEEK catwalk: "Key looks this season include pretty pastels, striking stripes, flirty florals and eye catching graphic prints. In terms of colours it's all about the bright neons, monochrome and also white and neutrals are big for spring/summer too. Shows always sell out so we'd encourage anyone who wants to come along to any of the events to snap up their tickets!"

One of Designer Ruedi Maguire's stunning dresses for SS'13!!

As Karen Anderson from West Coast Cooler added: "we're always excited when FASHIONWEEK comes round again and this season is no different. although it is now entering it's ninth year, each event brings something new and exciting to those who attend keen fashionistas are always eager to snap up the limited edition front row seats and sit back with a West Coast Cooler to enjoy the shows. There's something for everyone, no matter what their budget or fashion favourites are!"

Despite it raining on the day of the launch, I didn't let it stop me from dressing in the latest Spring/Summer trends: neon and florals in a stunning pink lace print dress (DP159), with matching lace print clutch (GP273) and lace print peep toe shoes (FP176) all from Karen Millen!

Pink lace print dress (DP159), lace print clutch (GP273) and lace print peep toe shoes (FP176) all from Karen Millen!

So I hear you ask, what's in store for all us budding fashionista's this time round? Well mark 21st-24th March in your diary as THE most stylish week this season!!

Thursday 21st March George at ASDA will showcase a major spring 2013 collection, with Friday 22nd March concentrating on Northern Irish boutiques including Jourdan and Blush, along with local designers Una Rodden, Ruedi Maguire, Grainne Maher and Lisa McCabe (Nor Lisa) among others!
Saturday 23th March will be the turn of the High Street, with high street retailers: Marks and Spencer, Oasis, warehouse, French Connection, Jigsaw, Benetton and Internationale as well as Dorothy Perkins, Debenhams, Miss Selfridges, uiz, Blue Inc, Gap, Republic, Wallis, Laura Ashley, New Look, Burton and Exhibit from CastleCourt. Once again the OUTLET Banbridge are returning for their third season to showcase their various collections!

Saving the best for last, once again there will be a scrumptious Fashion Tea on Saturday 23rd march and then closing up the week's events is the ever popular Style Sunday Event! (My favourite part of the FASHIONWEEK Calendar!!)
The event, which supports learning disability charity Mencap will once again feature an intimate fashion show of the most chic looks from the season as well top advice from FASHIONWEEK expert hair stylist Andrew Mulvenna and Award winning make up artist Paddy McGurgan!

Myself attending "Style Sunday" Autumn/Winter 2011 at James Street South with my friend Judith Armstrong wearing Signature statement print dress (DM198) accessorised with Stripe mini box bag (GL217) both from Karen Millen.

If the launch is anything to go by then we are in for a magnificent FASHIONWEEK, I for one am counting down the days and I look forward to seeing you all there!!

Tickets for the main catwalk shows (priced £20) are available from the Belfast Welcome Centre Box office or online via www.belfastfashionweek.com
For the latest information on West Coast Cooler FASHIONWEEK log onto www.facebook.com/belfastfw for updates!

All photographs kindly provided by and taken by Stephen Potter.

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