fashion diary: illustrator daisy de villeneuve
Monday, September 15
Wake up later than planned (9 a.m.), as I’d gone to see the fantastic Emmylou Harris in concert the night before. I check my e-mail and find a message from a PR asking if I’ve received the invite for an event on Wednesday. Can’t think straight. Have I? Thought all my invites were in one place, feel disorganized, and wish I had a PA…look through old e-mails, did I get it, did I RSVP!?! I can’t remember, so decide to just call her; turns out I never received it. I panic, suddenly wondering what I’m going to wear to London fashion week. The past couple of days have been quite sunny but you never know with English weather. Coats seem too wintery, so I rumble through my closet, find a navy Zac Posen jacket that’s perfect. (We’re old friends from his student days at Saint Martins.) I wear it with a sheer white blouse from Zac’s Fall ’08 collection, a vintage navy skirt, black tights, and Jil Sander black lace-up shoes. Have a moment about the whole fashion faux pas of navy and black being worn together, but I don’t have time to worry about it. Anyway, I quite like bit of a clash. It’s practical. I need to feel comfortable if I’m rushing around all over this week. Throw a pair of black Comptoir des Cotonniers high heels into the carrier bag I designed for Topshop. I need to figure out what I’m going to wear for the next few days as I’ve been living by the sea in Kent over the summer, so will stay with a friend. I have no idea, get a headache thinking about it, and toss a few options on my bed. The clock is ticking. I throw a bunch of dresses, purses, and high heels into my bright orange Globe-Trotter suitcase and travel to London on the train with my mother, Jan, who used to be a model in the seventies and was recently featured in the Felder Felder SHOWstudio video. Our first fashion week stop will be their show at the Royal Academy at 2 p.m.
Arrive in London and head to the Felder Felder show, which turns out to be great—lots of pretty dresses that I’m desperate for. Go backstage and say hello to my good friends Dani and Annette Felder. I bump into an old family friend, jewelry designer Nicky Butler, who’s wearing a really cool Helmet Newton T-shirt he designed for the museum shop in Berlin. We have tea and catch up.
Arrive at Stephen Jones’ perfume launch at Dover Street Market around 7:30 p.m. See lots of familiar faces—the actress Daisy Bates, looking gorgeous in a McQueen jacket, sequin Topshop leggings, Topshop blouse, and Terry de Havilland high heels, and Richard Mortimer from Ponystep wearing a black Ralph Lauren polo. I say hello to Stephen Jones and look around at the exhibit of Dafydd Jones’ brilliant 1980′s photos along with old retro books and magazines, including a copy of an old Cheap Date with one of my illustrations.
From Dover Street, I head to Christie’s for the Heart & Design charity auction. I’m on the committee, so am excited to see what is being showcased. Loads of wonderful things. A pretty yellow Roland Mouret seems to be a favorite. At about 11:30, I hail a cab and head home.
Tuesday, September 16
Decide to keep it simple today. Wear a black dress and turquoise jacket, both A.P.C., again with black tights and Jil Sander shoes. I can’t do high heels in the day—I don’t know how people do it. But heels are as always in my bag, just in case. The first stop of the day is the Royal Opera House to see the Ashley Isham show. I have a front-row seat next to actress Camilla Rutherford (who I’ve known since my art school days in Paris), dressed in green vintage. See Jasmine Guinness wearing one of her own designs for Oli and Jade Parfitt wearing a Roksanda Ilincic dress.
Back in the car. Driving through central London, I notice the Gap store with the photo (shot by Mikael Jansson) of me in the window, so stop the car and get a quick snap of me next to the giant poster. Very exciting.
After being stuck in traffic for about an hour, I get to the Eley Kishimoto show, where my friend, composer Daniel Pemberton, is DJ’ing. Get to the BFC tents with my Gareth Pugh black and white Linda Farrow sunglasses for Moët in hand (these allow me into the VIP Moët room, which is great way to while away time between shows). Daniel takes me back to the DJ booth, so I get a good view of the catwalk.
From the tents, I go to pick up my friend Charlotte, who’s with the actress Rebecca Hall, and we head to Clerkenwell to check out Jessica McCormack’s exquisite jewelry collection. Then I grab a cab to get across town for the On/Off Presents show at 5:15 p.m. Get there just in time, but it ends up running late. I bump into Jasmine Guinness again.
Put on my red Shu Uemura lipstick and matching Banana Republic shoes to add some color for the evening ahead and make my way to the Dunhill party, a very nice event to celebrate the opening of the Home of Alfred Dunhill at Bourdon House. The canapés are incredible: oysters and shrimp. See my friend the beauty guru Alex, who asks if I’m tired. Yes, I am tired, I’m exhausted, in fact, and this is only my second day so far. He tells me that I need “emergency essence spray” from Australian bush flowers. Yes please, sounds good.
I head over to the Natural History Museum to see the Mary McCartney exhibit. Nice setting amongst the dinosaurs. Lots of arty people there, like Tracey Emin and Sir Peter Blake and his wife, Chrissy. They introduce me to Mary’s uncle Mike McCartney, also a photographer. Have a nice chat with them, then catch a glimpse of Jasmine Guinness with Jade Parfitt. Third time I’ve seen Jasmine today, so we have a laugh about that; snap a photo of Jasmine with her fabulous Lulu Guinness lips purse.
Wednesday, September 17
Today I’m wearing a gray dress and brown belt by Comptoir des Cotonniers, the trusty black Jil Sander shoes, and a Jamin Puech handbag. Off to see the Betty Jackson show in the tents with my mother. There I spot my friend Frances von Hofmannsthal, dressed in Charles Anastase. She tells me that she’s been to every show of his.
Have lunch at the National Gallery with a friend and look around at the Wyndham Lewis exhibit. It’s good to see some art in between fashion shows! Slip on my brand-new Charlotte Olympia turquoise satin high heels and walk to her tea party at the nearby Trafalgar Hotel. It’s on the rooftop with an amazing view overlooking the London Eye and Big Ben. See Valentine Fillol Cordier, wearing a lovely Charles Anastase dress and a Ralph Lauren jacket, and we chat about New York. From there, I go to the Valentino exhibit at the Hospital in Covent Garden—great gowns. I wrap up my LFW with André 3000′s U.K. launch of Benjamin Bixby at Harrods. I get a good glimpse of the collection and chat with some friends.
At 9:30, I rush to Victoria to catch the train back to Kent. Check my messages on the train, get an e-mail from a friend who hopes I’ve had a good fashion week and tells me not to wear out my heels or melt my BlackBerry. He suggests a prescription of Converse sneakers to recover and elegant cupcakes—a good idea after all the Champagne. Can’t wait for a cup of hot tea.
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