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UK Style news and blog articles from The Huffington Post
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    It’s official: Celine Dion is living her best life with Vogue right now.

    Dion, who has been attending Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week in elaborate outfits, is quickly becoming the fashion queen we always knew she could be. 

    In a video for Vogue, Dion models all of the most statement-making looks from this season’s haute couture and it’s beyond fabulous. 

    We you Celine.

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    -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post UK, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Henry Holland believes that it is no longer necessary to be “tall, thin and blonde” to succeed as a model in the UK fashion industry, as casting agents now pick personality over appearance.

    The British designer spoke exclusively to HuffPost UK to mark the launch of the House of Holland collaboration with Cadbury’s, and we discussed how he ensures his brand represents diversity and what he is looking for when he chooses models for his shows. 

    Holland, who is already on his seventh coffee of the day when we talk, explains his approach to diversity has always been organic, rather than forced by a target.

    I’d never set a kind of aesthetic restriction on how I cast my shows, it’s about who the girls is when I meet her and what’s she’s about,” he said.

    “When I go to the casting process, as much as I need to like the way somebody looked in their outfit, they need to have good chat... I like to meet the girls and I like them to have a sense of humour,” explained Holland.

    The 34-year-old frequently follows potential models on social media beforehand.

    “I form these mild obsessions with the ones who are really hilarious,” he said. “I think that I need her, she’s so funny, she cracks me up on her Instagram stories.” 

    Holland is not only motivated by creating a “personality connection” at his castings, he is also conscious that the brand DNA requires a certain type of person in order for it to work.

    “Our clothes are very bold and I think there is a danger in some cases that if a girl is too shy or nervous - sometimes that comes with being too young - then there’s a danger that she doesn’t have a personality and the clothes wear her, rather than the other way round,” he explained.

    Despite his own efforts to be inclusive, Holland still works in an industry where diversity is a much-neglected area; in December The Fashion Spot’s annual diversity report revealed that only 29% of cover stars in 2016 were women of colour and only 0.9% - that is six people - were above a UK size 12. 

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    But Holland believes the industry is actively trying to make things better and defended magazine’s efforts.

    I think the industry is trying, there are lots of different initiatives in place and you look at the changes just while I’ve been in the industry,” he said.

    “I started working at the end of that period when it was all the models were cast to look the same, and there was a real idea that you were representing one woman when you were showcasing your collections.

    ″[Now] people want to work with girls because of who they are, in addition to what they look like. It’s another layer on top.”

    -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post UK, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Fashion and sustainability aren't two words you often see in the same sentence. An adjective that evokes images of industry and ecology, "sustainable" is actually coming into fashion when describing, well, fashion. And as Director of Denim at WGSN, I can tell you this is very good news for our industry.

    Sustainability as a concept has been buzzing for years, but its precise application to the world of fashion has been a bit murky. Still, there have been milestones:

    ● This past June, H&M, Nike, and Asos were amongst the 13 fashion and textile brands who signed the Prince of Wales International Sustainability Unit, vowing to source 100% of all their cotton from sustainable sources by 2025
    ● In April, the industry came together at leading denim trade show, Kingpins, part of Amsterdam Denim Days, and stirred up the sustainable denim debate
    ● In March, global fashion retailer C&A and its corporate foundation, the C&A foundation launched the Fashion for Good initiative, promoting a circular fashion economy.

    One-off sustainable collections, pledges for environmentally-sound production, and eco-friendly initiatives will only be effective, however, if they are part of a greater movement -- a movement that inspires and encourages all of us to think about our impact on our planet.

    As trend forecasters, WGSN works hand-in-hand with the fashion industry, guiding our clients through the ever-shifting landscape -- but we can't tell them to fasten their seat belts and not fasten our own. So, we decided to experience first-hand what brands go through when trying to make a shift towards a circular fashion economy and the challenges that come with producing sustainable fashion lines.

    In April, we launched our first ever sustainable denim sample collection in partnership with Avery Dennison, M&J Group, Absolute Denim and Amsterdam Denim Days. When making the collection, we came to realise that most suppliers, despite having innovative products focused on sustainability, had low stock of our chosen materials. We attribute this to a general lack of demand, largely driven by the fact that the industry has no legal responsibility to be sustainable; there are no regulatory departments for the textile industry like there are in the food industry, for example. Without the parameters and proper governance, manufacturers simply aren't obligated to create fabrics and materials that one would consider 'green'. With that being said, we found that it doesn't start with a brand saying they want to make a "sustainable collection" -- it must start with the industry demanding sustainability.

    Given the lack of formal regulation for sustainable textile production, the necessary parameters don't exist. For example, how do we know that reducing water usage by 1% during garment production equals sustainability? The process of creating such necessary criteria is underway, but it comes as no surprise that when politicians and consumers deny climate change, the conversation can only go so far.

    Another issue is that many brands struggle to establish social responsibility as a core corporate mission. Why is that? Well, shifting values is hard work and requires persuasion and patience -- all while running the risk of appearing pretentious and contrived. So why should brands make the effort to embrace environmentally friendly practices when it means having to walk an extra mile? Not to mention that in reality, they don't necessarily have to.

    NGOs such as Greenpeace are raising awareness for circular fashion economies and urging a shift towards environmentally conscious behaviour. And their message isn't falling on deaf ears -- consumers aren't just listening, they're taking action, too. Previously driven by price point and choice, today's fashion consumers progressively expect sustainable products, processes, and behaviour. This forces the industry to rethink business models in order to stay profitable. The question remains whether consumer preferences will also ensure that brands truly adopt sustainability across the board, given the lack of formal monitoring.

    The fashion industry is now at a crossroads: it cannot ignore the environmental trend any longer. One-off sustainable campaigns and collections won't be effective unless they're part of a broader strategy: brands have to think of the full lifecycle of their products; more consumers need to change their habits; non-fashion corporations need to shift their conventions; politicians need to address climate change head-on; and a socially-conscious mindset needs to be applied across the board to create a truly sustainable industry. Let's look to Patagonia as a role model. They consider every step of their supply chain: every stitch, every fabric, and every manufacturer before they create, design, or produce anything. That is what I believe every fashion and textile company should be doing. There's too much at stake for all of us.

    -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post UK, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Gloria Steinem and Dorothy Pitman Hughes have released a limited edition charity t-shirt to help promote equal rights and it’s fabulous. 

    The friends and activists who have been championing women’s rights for decades, teamed up to design the limited edition tee. 

    Priced at £20 ($24.99) (with UK shipping available), the ‘Gloria and Dorothy’s Equal Rights Now Tee’ is available for a limited time only and comes in several sizes and styles to suit all.

    Taking to Facebook, Steinem shared a picture of her wearing the t-shirt with pride on Wednesday 19 July. 

    “Equal rights now! Here’s my first ever limited edition charity tee that I designed with Dorothy Pitman Hughes based on a photo of us taken 46 years ago,” Steinem wrote. 

    “100% of the profits from the sale will benefit the ERA Coalition, which is working to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, guaranteeing equality under the constitution for women and girls.

    “Only available for a limited time. Constitutional equality for all isn’t a dream—it’s a right. Let’s finally pass the ERA.”

    Several celebrities have taken to Instagram to share a snap of them wearing one: 

    A post shared by Robin Wright (@robingwright) on

    A post shared by Rainn Wilson (@rainnwilson) on

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    The Duchess of Cambridge opted to honour a German designer with her choice of dress for the fourth day of the royal tour. 

    The Duchess, who was accompanied by Prince William, looked incredible as per, in a mid-length bird print dress by German-born designer Markus Lupfer for an evening party in Clärchens Ballhaus in Berlin on Thursday 20 July. 

    Wearing a design from the brand’s pre-fall 2017 collection, the Duchess paired it with a silver belt, a pearl bracelet and geometric metallic clutch. 

    The Duchess also wore her beige Prada heels for the second time during the five-day tour of Germany and Poland.  

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    Gemma Collins opted for a very avant-garde style for ITV’s summer party, featuring extreme shoulder-pads.

    Collins, who stars in the reality TV show ‘The Only Way Is Essex’, wore a light brown ruched dress with oversized shoulder pads and chainmail detailing for the annual celebration in London on Thursday 20 July. 

    Pairing the dress with metallic stiletto heels and clutch, the ensemble would have fitted right in at this year’s 69th Met Gala in New York, celebrating the designer Rei Kawakubo and Comme des Garçons

    Taking to Instagram, the reality TV star shared a few snaps of herself before heading off to the party.

    “Rocking my inner Lady Gaga tonight,” she wrote.  

    A post shared by Gemma Collins (@gemmacollins1) on

    A post shared by Gemma Collins (@gemmacollins1) on

    A post shared by Gemma Collins (@gemmacollins1) on

    Snaps of Collins bold outfit were shared by a lot of people on Instagram.

    A post shared by Hun (@loveofhuns) on

    A post shared by Natalie Moore (@nat_nat_charlie) on

    The dress was made by London-based designer, Gerda Truubon who specialises in bespoke designs.

    Trubbon also shared a snap on Instagram of her creation: 

    A post shared by Gerda Truubon (@gerdatruubon) on

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    -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post UK, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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  • 07/21/17--03:52: Footwear Is A Feminist Issue
  • Imagine for a moment, someone, a manager, sending you home because they don't like what you're wearing. Picture your face, picture the words they'd use, the official-sounding management-speak they'd employ in an attempt to lessen the awkwardness.

    That's what happened to a London receptionist last year, the story became a national scandal and a video we made in response travelled round the world. And yet the very same event could be repeated, legally in any UK workplace today as the government rejected calls to change dres

    We were trying to think how to respond to the news that a receptionist at PricewaterhouseCoopers was sent home for refusing to wear heels at her desk. Nicola Thorp - educated, urban, making her living in a competitive city was one of ours: exactly the kind of woman we'd invented Stylist to entertain. She hadn't been treated appropriately and we wanted to find a way of saying, 'This will not do any more'.

    Our response starred some men who work in our office, it took a couple of hours to film, a day to edit, and it was seen by 20 million people.

    We sat around in the windowless basement room that serves as our creative nerve centre (this seems odd now I write it, maybe the lack of distraction works for us?) and we started, as I remember, with outrage and disbelief but slowly came round to humour. If you can make people laugh at a political absurdity, you take your point beyond the debate, beyond lines drawn by party and ideology and you enter the world of the sharable, self-evident truth.

    Would us men be treated this way? We began think about discomfort and mobility. All of us were wearing clothes that would allow us to run from an attacker or scale a reasonably sized oak. Dr Martens, the odd brogue and substantial majority of white trainers, made us mobile and profoundly comfortable. Then we wondered how it would feel to have someone make us take them off and switch for footwear that pinched feet, offset postures and made stairs challenging let alone trees?


    So the idea was born, the men of Stylist would try wearing heels. Men would feel the pain women had felt for years. We laughed as we all enjoyed our own mental pictures and we continued to laugh as our hand-picked group of young men ventured out onto our nearby cobbles and staircases followed by a camera.

    This was not an assault on heels - the women in the office love them; the Stylist audience loves them. Heels can be a cheering luxury, an empowering extra four inches, a playful nod to the glamour and the femininity of the past. But the choice has to be theirs. The moment it's forced upon them, the pinching and the balancing becomes intolerable. This was about choice and freedom, not Louboutins.

    The men sacrificed their ankles and their dignity and the video shows them finally saluting the extraordinary trick their colleagues pull off every day as they walk and stand without crying or screaming. We turned the tables and the world (genuinely, a fair proportion of the world) watched, commented and shared.

    The responses fell into two main categories: delight that the extraordinary act of coercion that sent a woman home had been marked in this way, and secondly, women who fancied the blokes from our office. We haven't counted but I suspect the sexually intrigued outnumbered the morally outraged. This was the internet remember.

    Regardless of our distracting males, we remain convinced that this timely gender reversal touched a nerve. When we launched Stylist, feminism was a relatively uncharted area in a women's press dominated by sketchy (that is, entirely fabricated) celebrity stories and the creepily detailed analysis of paparazzi pictures and the tiny flaws they exposed. Women's magazines weren't very keen on women. They laughed at them for sweating, for having normal knees, for being too fat, for being too thin... We broke the mould, but the battles still needed fighting.

    The 20 million people who watched our heels video understood that women in 2017 have the right to wear whatever the hell they want on their feet, whenever they want and no employer - or any individual or public body - should interfere with that freedom. They also, it turns out, have lost many of their traditional inhibitions about expressing their sexual feelings on the world's largest social media platform. Brilliant.

    -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post UK, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    The Duchess of Cambridge chose a lovely lilac dress by British designer Emilia Wickstead for the final day of the royal tour. 

    The Duchess, who was accompanied by Prince William, looked classically stylish in a full-sleeve lilac dress as the royal couple boarded a train from Berlin to Hamburg on Friday 21 July. 

    Pairing the dress with a crimson clutch, the Duchess also wore her beige pumps for the second time during the tour.

    London-based designer Emilia Wickstead is known for her feminine aesthetic and demure cuts and designs.

    Both the Duchess and her sister Pippa Middleton have previously worn various designs by the brand.  

    The Duke and Duchess have been on a five-day tour of Germany and Poland. 

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    When you flick through magazines and find heavily-edited bodies staring back at you, it can be difficult to accept your body’s differences as beautiful.

    Hairless, scarless, mark-less - all beauty standards women are told they need to aspire to. Yet 21-year-old artist Cinta Tort Cartró wants to challenge this view.

    The artist and feminist, from Barcelona, Spain, uses her work to protest “male-dominated culture” and educate her community.

    More recently, she has been painting women’s perceived ‘flaws’ in rainbow colours to draw attention to their beauty. 

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    There are many types of bodies, just as there are many types of stretch marks,” the artist wrote in the caption for the photo above. “And in this, in diversity, there is wealth.”

    She continued: “All bodies have stains, hairs, freckles, stretch marks, curves, lines, wounds, wrinkles... and all are equally valid.

    “It is time for us to begin to love ours because, after all, this is our tool of communication with the world. And if we do not like the tool we use for it, we can hardly feel free.”

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    Cartró’s art is inspired by her own journey to love her body. She said she spent years hating her stretch marks and finding ways to cover them, but then something changed. 

    “I realised that if I did not accept them, I was not accepting myself,” she explained on Instagram. 

    “Stretch marks are part of our essence, our moments, our lives, our stories and us. 

    “They are so beautiful that I do not know how sometimes they get us to hate them.”

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    Cartró also uses paint and glitter to depict menstruation - in the form of colourful period stains on women’s underwear and down their legs.

    She uses the hashtag #manchoynomedoyasco, translated as ‘I stain and I do not disgust’, as part of a larger movement among artists to tackle period taboos.

    She’s also shared photos of women’s breasts covered in flowers, inspired by the #FreeTheNipple moment.

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

    A post shared by ¿ CINTA (@zinteta) on

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    Aqua famously once sang "life in plastic, it's fantastic". However, it's not so cool when it's stacked in landfills or swimming in the oceans with fish. I recently found out it's estimated that there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish by 2050 - can you imagine snorkelling and instead of seeing Nemo swimming around you see a mountain of plastic bags or bottles?

    We all add to the plastic mountain daily, mostly without noticing. You could be using a shampoo bottle, or wrapping your sandwiches in cling film, all without realising that all of these things are single-use plastic products that you often throw away after using.

    It's not always easy to cut down on consumption of single-use plastics, but I've discovered some simple ways to reduce my usage. One of my areas of weakness was plastic water bottles, I'd buy one if I was on the way to the gym or if I was thirsty whilst out shopping. We're a nation of bottled water lovers, using 7.7billion a year in the UK alone!

    You're probably thinking that recycling is the solution, but the damage starts with the production of plastic. Even the process to recycle the bottles causes pollution and harms the planet. Some of us also forget to recycle, which last year led to 5.5billion plastic water bottles being wasted.

    We all have the planet's best interest at heart. No one wants to see turtles hurt by straws or beaches littered with plastic bottles, but we can all do our bit to be a little more eco-friendly. It doesn't have to be a huge change either, we all take a reusable bag to the shops now that it cost 5p to buy one. It's just as simple to make other sustainable swaps.

    That's why I'm teaming up with BRITA to encourage everyone to make a simple #SwapForGood and my first step has been to swap my single-use plastic water bottle habit for a reusable bottle. I've been using a bottle that filters water and makes it taste much nicer. One of the reasons I used plastic water bottles was because I liked the taste so this is a great alternative. Sometimes it's hard to remember to take it in my bag when I'm out and about, but I've gotten into a habit which means I reduce my impact on the planet that little bit more. Not everyone is perfect!

    henry and lily

    At House of Holland, we're also continually aware of the growing links between fashion and sustainability and we want to produce clothes with a conscience. More than half of us want to buy products that we know to be environmentally friendly or committed to a good cause, which is a step in the right direction and I'm actively exploring ways that we can improve our manufacturing processes.

    As part of the BRITA #SwapForGood campaign, we've used the power of fashion to shout about this issue and raise awareness of the increasing plastic pollution problem and encourage people to make sustainable swaps in their lives. I have created two slogan t-shirts, which are limited edition so grab one from the House of Holland website sharpish!

    'Don't be A Waster' shows that you're not that person who throws things away without a second though; you think about the effect of putting your plastic container in the bin or buying a bottle of shower gel over a bar of soap and gets a lol to boot. Win win.

    'Single-use Plastic is Never Fantastic' shows that you care about our little planet, whether it's through taking a reusable bag to the supermarket or reducing your use of plastic water bottles.

    It's not just the slogans that show a message, the t-shirts were created in a sustainable way, using about seven plastic water bottles and a bundle of salvaged cotton to make each one. Without these t-shirts the bottles would have otherwise ended up in seas and landfill, which as I've said isn't a pretty sight!

    My mate Lily Cole is an avid eco-campaigner, supporting Water Aid and even wearing a dress made of recycled plastic water bottles to the Oscars last year. She's supporting the #SwapForGood message with me to encourage us to take action and make a pledge to stop using single-use plastic water bottles.

    Buying one of the #SwapForGood t-shirts will not only make a sustainable fashion statement, but will also help clear the oceans of plastic as all the profits are being donated to the Marine Conservation Society.

    We hope that these t-shirts encourage you to make small swaps in your life, not only to help save the planet but to make you feel great. Tag me in your t-shirts on Instagram using #SwapForGood and @houseofholland. To purchase a limited edition BRITA x House of Holland #SwapForGood t-shirt and fill&go bottle visit

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    A blogger who said her swimwear picture received more than 900 hurtful comments has filmed an emotional video in which she pleads for a change in the way society tackles online abuse.

    Callie Thorpe was subjected to “violent, abusive” comments after being featured in a Vogue article about swimwear, and later interviewed by Yahoo about it.

    In a tearful video, shared on her YouTube channel, the blogger called for a shift in attitudes towards ‘trolls’.

    Rather than ignoring them and pretending they don’t exist, we need to deal with the problem head-on, she said. 

    A post shared by Callie Thorpe (@calliethorpe) on

    Earlier in the month, a photo of Thorpe in a bikini was featured on Vogue’s site alongside supermodels Karlie Kloss, Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Ashley Graham. 

    “It’s the first time I’ve ever seen Vogue feature any diversity really - especially in regards to size,” the blogger, who is a UK size 24, said. “I was really proud of it and I still am really proud.”

    At the time, Vogue tweeted a link to the article and Thorpe shared it, adding: “To all the people that called me fat, ugly and treated me like trash because of my weight growing up, catch me on Vogue with your Woman Crush Wednesday.”

    The tweet gained a lot of attention which led to Yahoo asking to interview the blogger. Sadly, when she read the piece back online, she scrolled down to the comments section and was horrified by what she saw. 

    “I scrolled onto some really nasty comments about me that... They were just so awful that I couldn’t even get them out of my mind,” Thorpe said in a YouTube video titled ‘Dealing with online abuse’.

    “There were 900 comments and pretty much all of them were vile - they were violent, abusive comments and it was the worst thing I’ve ever read in the whole five years I’ve been blogging.”

    According to her video, one of the horrendous comments said: “Realistically models are meant to be appealing not to make me puke.”

    Yahoo has since removed the option to comment on the article she was featured in, as well as the comments section.

    A post shared by Callie Thorpe (@calliethorpe) on

    Fighting back the tears, she continued: “I couldn’t get it out of my brain. I couldn’t sleep because of some of the things I read about myself.

    “I can’t understand how people can be so hateful. I’m very sad at the prospect that people are going through this alone.”

    The blogger acknowledged that everyone has to deal with body-shaming and trolling at some point, but added that if you want to see the worst end of the spectrum, “take a look at how fat women are treated, especially fat women of colour”.

    Thorpe said the general advice around trolling is to just ignore it and forget about it, but this needs to change as it sends the wrong message, implying the victims of abuse should just filter the negativity out, while the perpetrators can get away with it. 

    “It’s insane to me, we just think that if we call someone a ‘troll’ it makes it okay. Some of the stuff these people write is illegal, it’s not even opinion. It’s just violent, nasty shit that no one should ever have to see,” she added.

    Thorpe also noted that the media has a responsibility to moderate such negativity in the comments section of articles.

    “We can’t just keep pretending that it’s not happening,” she added. “Please use your voice, please use your report button, please email people in charge and tell them that it’s not acceptable to have comments in a section like that.”

    Writing on Instagram after her video had gone live, she said: “I want you all to know I won’t be silenced by people like this, it won’t stop me helping women feel good about themselves and it won’t stop me speaking out.

    “I hope you join me in speaking out against this problem too.”

    -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post UK, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Pirelli’s calendar for 2018 features an all-black cast and it’s beyond powerful. 

    Photographed by Tim Walker, the calendar includes 17 black models and entertainers, all in elaborate costumes for an ‘Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland’ theme.

    Styled by the newly appointed editor-in-chief of British Vogue Edward Enninful, well-known faces take on individual characterised roles from the much-loved book by Lewis Carroll. 

    A post shared by Pirelli (@pirelli) on

    The celebrity line-up is impressive: model Adwoa Aboah as Tweedledee; musician Diddy and supermodel Naomi Campbell as Royal Beheaders; actress Lupita Nyongo as the Doormouse; actress Whoopi Goldberg as the Royal Duchess; Ru Paul as the Queen of Hearts; actor Djimon Hounsou as the King of Hearts; and actress Sasha Lane as the Mad March Hare. 

    The fashion world still has a long way to go in terms of promoting diversity within the industry, but this is a step forward. 

    Vogue’s Edward Enninful took to Instagram on Thursday 20 July to share snaps from behind-the-scenes.

    “What an honour it was to work with so many icons of today,” he wrote.  


    Supermodel Naomi Campbell also shared a snap on Instagram with her fellow ‘Royal Beheader’, Diddy:

    “I moved mountains to be a part of this,” said Sean Combs (a.k.a Diddy) told the New York Times

    “It is a chance to push social consciousness and break down barriers.

    “For so many years, something like this would not have happened in the fashion world, so it feels like being part of history and playing an active role. I want to lead by example.”

    Over the past couple of years, Pirelli has changed the direction of their previously sex appeal-fuelled calendars. 

    Their 2017 edition was shot by photographer Peter Lindbergh and was left completely un-retouched as a powerful statement about beauty ideals. 

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    ASOS are selling light up wellies, and they’re seriously cool. 

    Covered in silver glitter, and featuring a purple and green light up sole, they’re what our 90s nostalgia dreams are made of.  

    Priced at £22, the boots come in UK sizes 3-8. 

    We think they may have started a trend for summer as they’re the perfect fit for festival attire. 

    Here are a few other glitter-tastic wellies to pick from:

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    Gung Ho Design, Photography by Agata Kocon

    It's no secret that the fashion industry is the second worst polluter on the planet. Coupled with the meteoric rise in fast throw away ideologies something definitely needs to change.

    It takes almost 1800 gallons of water to produce a pair of jeans. If we physically saw that wastage, I'm sure many of us would get a nasty shock at actually how much of an impact it has on the environment. To paint the picture a little clearer, an average bath is 36 gallons, so that's around 50 baths. That just sounds ridiculous.

    It's not an awareness problem. In fact, awareness is thriving. Never before have we seen, or needed, so many people, brands, businesses and organisations talking about these issues. So where is ethical fashion is going wrong?

    Well let's take a step back for a moment. The aim is that one day all fashion will be sustainable as standard. But to get to that point, it's important that ethical fashion brands appeal to the everyday consumer. In all honesty, a lot of people don't take into account whether something is or isn't sustainable - it's simply down to whether it's good design, the right price range and if they like it. This means the ball is in the industry's court to design with this in mind; and not sustainability. Now that might sound strange but let me explain.

    Up until very recently a lot of ethical fashion is plain, monochrome, typically scandi in style. The sad truth is that most sustainable designers do not design clothes with a punch, with those that do tending to cost an arm or a leg. It's safe to design plain clothing, and with a growing number of shoppers already looking for ethical fashion, it makes sense that this is where it has stayed. Don't get me wrong, everyone needs plain, well cut staples in their wardrobe, but if that's where ethical fashion stops, we're stopping fashion's key purpose - expressing yourself.

    If we are going to move into an era where a significant number of people become engaged with ethical fashion, we need to connect with a very different audience. This means ethical fashion brands have to take risks. They have to push boundaries and essentially be just as exciting as any other fashion brand, but ethically viable too. Only then will we see a paradigm shift in the industry towards sustainability as standard.

    Now that's not to say that exciting ethical fashion isn't out there, it's just run by individuals and small businesses that share that passion and really want to make a difference. These pioneers need help. They value every sale made. They jump around the room and punch the air in celebration.

    So if you can, support small, well-made local companies and help them grow. Without support they won't be able to spur on those that are stuck in the rut. It might mean changing the way you buy clothes.

    I caught up with actress, comedian and writer Aisling Bea to get her thoughts on how we can all do our bit. "It costs just a little extra money and a little extra conscientiousness to buy things that are made ethically, which will mean that you will love and nurture the clothes you buy more. I was a "spend a tenner" shopper, buying heaps of rags that I would eventually just throw out. But that is a false economy we are fooled into. We can no longer pretend that all of our cheap clothing appears by magic with no consequences for people who made them and the environment. We have to show that we are prepared and want to pay more to the people who make our clothing and for clothes that do not harm the planet and it starts with small changes and using your buying power. The consumer will drive that change and that is US!"

    So keep a look out for local ethical brands that use organic fabrics or surplus material, donate to charities and have a low carbon footprint. The better made a garment is, the longer it will last, so invest in pieces you just don't want to take off. There is something wonderful about purchasing a product that is slightly more expensive and really good quality. It's that feeling of getting something truly special. It's stepping away from buying cheap and cheerful and saving up to collate a smaller, beautiful and more refined wardrobe. It will make not only you, but the small business and the planet happy. You get something individual and special and they continue to take on the industry that's simply changing far too slowly. What's not to lose?

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    Pyramid Seven has created ‘underwear for periods, not gender’ and people can’t get enough of their pioneering efforts. 

    Founded by Michelle Janayea and Zipporah Jarmon, the Chicago-based fashion retailer - who only launched their first collection in June - has designed underwear options that aren’t traditionally feminine for when you’re menstruating.  

    Featuring two styles - from ‘agave’ to ‘marmalade’ - in a colourful mix, the range is available in sizes XS - XL. 

    After noticing a gap in the market, the two friends came together to launch an online fundraiser to help get their company started. 

    “After noticing there was a lack of conversation around people with periods who didn’t normally wear feminine underwear, we decided to do something about it,” the brand wrote on their website.

    “In this last year, we’ve worked passionately around the clock to bring you affirming boxer briefs for people with periods.

    A pair of Pyramid Seven boxers were donated to the Broadway Youth centre for every sponsor over£39 ($50) – an educational and health service for LGBTQ teens and young people.

    “We have found a simple solution that allows boxer briefs to support menstruating products,” they wrote. 

    “We have eliminated the additional fabric that normally comes with boxer briefs and have added fabric on the gusset which allows for a menstrual pad to be placed on top of the fabric with the wings folding underneath.

    “If a person uses a tampon or cup, they can add their liner on top of the fabric.

    Priced at £20 ($26), their designs are sustainable and eco-friendly - with all of their garments made by hand, hand dyed and made from organic jersey cotton. 

    And their success speaks for itself as they’ve currently sold out of every design on their website - but they’re working on a restock for 28 July (with international shipping available) so hang tight. 

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