Laurent “Lilzeon” François is a fashion blogger & photographer. He runs a creative agency in London (RE-UP) which shapes digital stories for brands. He writes with Vu Quan Nguyen for L'Express Styles in France (Le Boulevardier).
When you’re a brand with such an history like Levi’s, you probably don’t have to imagine much in terms of advertising: your customers are the modern heroes and the most compelling stories to talk about your jeans.
It’s now the 4th time we’re going to attend some of the shows. And let’s face it: most of the tips we read are not exactly what we were looking for.
Basically, we had few bad experience:
desperately looking for food at Somerset House: queuing for 1 hour to get something ridiculously small. Realizing that we also need to have a pastry not to collapse
trying to leave Somerset House. Ending at Prêt à Manger. And crying
expecting to party @ The Box. And finally at 11pm, realizing that it’s too late and that you’d rather go back to the hotel and watch a cool series instead of attending party with PR agencies (no offence thus)
looking for free wifi; finally relying on 3G to send your 1Go photos
So here’s our unconventional list of tips and tricks, and cool places, created with Pindrop.
Share your thoughts! And click on the picture to access our list.
DKNY has just launched a brand new collection called “DKNY Ramadan”.
It’s been designed by two digital socialites, Yala Golsharifi, fashion editor for Styles Magazine and Tamara Al Gabbani, fashion designer in Dubai.
A daring collection as it plays with Ramadan. Who said that fashion could not match faith?
The general idea is to provide to Muslim women some outfits which are both convenient for this special month while it does fully hide feminine body. A great example of inspiring Modest fashion.
The collection is supported by a smart communication campaign, asking the models what’s their favourite Ghabka destination (an event made to connect and socialize) or their favourite places for Sahur (the first meal before the sun awakes)
DKNY focuses on the joyful part of Islam instead of insisting on some austerity cliché when it comes to religion.
DKNY explores a territory that not so many brands want to enter, fearing hostile reactions. Yes, faith is not the enemy of womanhood. Yes, being Muslim and liking fashion can work hand in hand. A
Now it’s time to look at which consumers are going to buy this collection: are they women living between L.A. and Dubai or is the collection dedicated to more “hardcore” countries?
One of the world’s best parkour and free running athletes Marcus “Zyrken” Gustafsson from Helsingborg, Sweden is joining forces with the clothing and underwear brand, Björn Borg. Zyrken is known for his creative vaults and tricks with excellent acrobatic control.
Zyrken is a former gymnast that started his career in Parkour and free running when he was fifteen years old. He has been active for around ten years and runs the largest free running team in Sweden. Zyrken has been on the winner’s stand in most prestigious competitions in Parkour and Freerunning for the last 6 years. But what is Parkour actually?
“a holistic training discipline using movement that developed from military obstacle course training. Practitioners aim to get from A to B in the most efficient way possible.They do this using only their bodies and their surroundings to propel themselves; furthermore, they try to maintain as much momentum as is possible in a safe manner. Parkour can include obstacle courses, running, climbing, swinging, vaulting, jumping, rolling, quadrupedal movement, and the like, depending on what movement is deemed most suitable for the given situation.”
That’s interesting because Parkour, like skateboarding or aggressive in-line skating, tries to think differently elements from our daily lives: urban equipment, handrails, blocks. A natural match with fashion which tries to synthesise loads of cultural inspirations surrounding us.
The collaboration with Björn Borg runs as of July 1st, 2014. Previously this year, Björn Borg signed with Olympian freeskier Henrik Harlaut and Olympian speed skater Koen Verweij. Björn Borg will challenge Zyrken on a Swedish Mission later this year.
“We have followed Zyrken for a while and are amazed by his energy and skills. We immediately saw a great brand fit: Zyrken is both colourful and brave, just as the people who wear our products”, says Lina Söderqvist, Marketing Director at Björn Borg
A good move for the brand to set up more urban roots.
It had been a while since I didn’t have a breakthrough momentum in London. Not that the place is not energetic anymore, but things tend to sometimes look a bit the same…
And there came Steven D.R Skippen, Founder and Shoe Artisan at Shoeshine UK that I met at Monsieur London. I had never experienced such a sensation on my feet, through my shoes; I had only used automatic machines in some hotels here and there. Then I understood what bespoke and talent mean. With his own hands, Steven knows how to transform your shoes into YOUR shoes.
We can make a bet: if I were a brand collection director, I would directly hire Steven to create a capsule collection.
Hi Steven: when did you star shining shoes?
I started shining shoes over 14 years ago I literally fell into it as a stop gap but to this day am still shining shoes. For 13 years my big red chair has been installed in the lobby of The London Hilton on Park Lane, my hands have had the opportunity to dwell on the shoes of the Sultan of Brunei, The Dalai Lama, Mike Tyson, the King of Jordan, Jean Claude Van Damme and the great football star, George Best.
I started Shoeshine UK in October 2000“originally at The London Hilton Metropole but quickly transferred to The London Hilton on Park Lane. I brought a style of shoe care that the UK had never seen before and have cared for many icon’s shoes”.
Using just our bare hands and the best products available regardless of cost we are revolutionising the industry and need people to understand the difference in what we do to others.
It requires very strong skills as you have a pretty unique approach: you use your own hands. How did you learn?
I only received one weeks training as to do what I now can achieve takes years of trial and error. I have perfected The Art of Shine and patina (colouring of leather with dyes) in effect never accepting that I can never improve and always striving for perfection.
I do all my work with my bare hands a skill not seen in Europe and achieve far superior results because of this.
Shoeshining is an amazing bespoke service: can we “book” you for special events?
Yes I do many private events my past CV includes Tommy Hilfiger, Esquire magazine, Browns fashion and Monsieur London. As you can imagine we are a very sought after service due to how unique we are.
What are your favourite products for shoeshining?
I only use the finest ingredients Saphir and Angelus products renowned as unbeatable in our profession. It begins by feeding the leather with three different creams a combination of Beeswax, mink oil from Saphir, Lord Sheraton leather balsam and Ultra Creme, then a leather massage, followed by applying a multitude of colours at each location of the shoe; this can darken and lighten at will to emphasize the slenderness of the foot.
Brushes to me have no effect. If you applied cream to your face would you use a brush? I like to penetrate the leather with my bare hands giving care and a deep shine at the same time”. Believe what you see not what you read, redefining a dying artform.
I know you have dozens of projects: when will we see your own range of products?
You are right my projects are endless. Establishing my patina service is paramount and trying to make people understand that not all shoeshiners are the same.
Regarding a product range this is just around the corner and has taken a long time due to getting it perfect.
What can we wish you?
Why use a service that gives you a result that you could get yourself at home when you could use a service that would change your perception of shoeshine forever? The public are not aware of the differences and this is why shoeshine is sadly at the lowest point it has ever been. Its time people saw what shoeshine really could be like”.
Steven D.R. Skippen in brief:
Years in profession -14 years
Favourite shoe company – Berluti, Santoni, Gaziano Girling, Giacopelli, Pierre Corthay, Stefanobi, Septieme Largeur, Edward Green, JM Weston, Cleverley, Marc Guyot, Carlos Santos, Aubercy, Emling and Loding
First job in profession – London City Airport in 2000
Favourite products-Saphir, Angelus, La Cordonnerie Anglaise and Lord Sheraton
Greatest inspirations – Dandy Shoecare, Landry Lacour and JM Le Gazel for patina and Stephen Reynolds for shoeshine.
Experience – London City Airport, Bloomberg, Lehman Brothers, KPMG, Harbour Exchange Tower, London Hilton Metropole, The London Hilton on Park Lane, Dunhill, Marks club, George club, The Office group, Whites Club and Goodwood festival.