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Style XL

Posted on 20 July 2015

There was a lot of love, passion and enthusiasm at StyleXL on Saturday. Leah organised what was a truly amazing day, a framework in which interactivity and spontaneity thrived unlike the phoney or pretentious events that I gave up taking part in London some years back. I really wasn't personally at my best, such has been my recent workload. My wife, Aoife and I arrived at 10.15, with a car full of goodies, but running on empty. I was lifted by the truly amazing Georgina Grogan and family, GG has a very painful back, and I can more than sympathise with her as my own back is in considerable pain. Nevertheless, Style XL got off to a very early start for us, we had brought about 60 or 70 old samples mainly in size 24, some unique and maybe 20 of these were snapped up before official opening time at 12. I was "gone" mentally or what I would describe as being "punchy" from a grueling work schedule of 12 hours a day at a minimum for many weeks now. But, meeting all the lovely ladies, some bloggers who I have got to know through their blogs got me through the day somehow. For me, my physical more importantly mental condition and shortage of time at the event, hampered focus or that was how I felt. It was the only negative of the day. I was pleased with the reaction to the few items I bought from new collection and would later go down the runway with a few designs which were outside my own comfort zone. The original plan was just to show one new style with a walk from Georgina Grogan. But it panned out in the 2 weeks ago that we would put on a little show. Tanya was asked if she wanted to stroll a dress that she had fallen in love with, Claire was deployed into action. We had decided, I think last Thursday to ask Leah to join us walking an "atonement" green velvet sweetheart neck maxi, a red carpet signature. GG like me not known for her patience, had to deal with 7 running order changes in 45 minutes. I think I asked the wonderful Haley to do the walk about 15 minutes before we were on- a really slinky off the shoulders frock featuring a printed stencil rose. The lady would rock it and wow this dress celebrated her curves. Paige who I have to say is another star plus size star in the making somehow managed 3 walks through 3 dress changes in the 8 minutes, so we got to see Naomi's leopard spot dress, the red wriggle midi dress and the tone purple bling velvet maxi. Nancy strolled the Nancy hour glass dress in purple and brought the rich ruby 1940's  "Madam" velvet maxi dress to life. Of course I messed up my own strut on the catwalk. And had on the spur of moment asked and she consented the lovely April Wilson to do a walk down the runway. April had just happened to be standing next to me watching our show wearing a previously unseen Scarlett & Jo design. I couldn't help myself April looked amazing, all the ladies looked amazing, so 7 changes in the running order plus April joining in plus me. I enjoyed it. Most particularly as  GG walked next Summer'16 signature dress and the very beautiful elegant Scarlett & Jo signature lace and velvet black maxi dress. Would love to have stayed for the evening and Sundays workshop Leah but I was shattered after an exhilarating day at StyleXL. You and your team are fantastic. Imagery courtesy of Alfie http://www.alfiebsmith.com/ [caption id="attachment_749" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11752166_477130412446922_2176676652922336013_n Gifi tried something new with Georgina, here she is opening the show "au natural" in what Gifi describes as one of his best designs in years.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_741" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11701139_477130479113582_7232788261169517779_n Paige, a star plus size star in the making was red hot in our v neck dress.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_744" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11705268_477130535780243_8181153833297209430_n Nancy strolled the Nancy hour glass dress in purple.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_740" align="aligncenter" width="640"]45825_477130679113562_3748652346924340896_n Claire knew just how to work our blue dress.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_742" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11760100_477131465780150_866472069002944088_n The crowd went wild for Paige in our leopard number.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_747" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11041299_477131592446804_1381860409884428395_n The lovely April working vibrant prints.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_745" align="aligncenter" width="640"]17014_477131205780176_4313807362931994024_n Tanya is a vision in velvet.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_739" align="aligncenter" width="640"]1375142_477131232446840_7993337428984742732_n Leah walking an "atonement" green velvet sweetheart neck maxi, a red carpet signature[/caption] [caption id="attachment_746" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11694774_477131359113494_4755987091862505896_n Hayley rocked this velvet maxi and wow this dress celebrated her curves.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_743" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11745407_477132009113429_1267564327211906836_n Paige was velvet perfection in this hour glass dress.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_737" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11231024_477131692446794_8021961130288942503_n Nancy brought the rich ruby 1940's "Madam" velvet maxi dress to life.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_738" align="aligncenter" width="640"]11745509_477131882446775_8696576832652151892_n The Queen of Lace, in the signature black velvet dress from the red carpet collection.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_748" align="aligncenter" width="600"]CKNDkZ1WUAAZjdu Gifi attempting to take a catwalk bow but bad back won't bend.[/caption] CKNCEp-WgAAg7ox

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  • Kitty Wood: October 29, 2015

    Looks like you had a fabulous time Gifi! I was gutted I couldn’t be there, particularly with so many bargains that would have fit me! Hehe. Everybody looked absolutely beautiful, cannot wait to see the new collection! That leopard print dress is amaaazing, I love the Nancy, and that first dress! Love! Hopefully I’ll be able to attend next time :)
    Kitty xx

  • LollyLikes: October 29, 2015

    Really loved all the velvet jewel tones although a velvet prom/skater shape would not go a miss for the ladies not so confident with their belly. I snapped up some polka dot lace tops and would love to see you do a polka range and just because I am looking for budget bridal and notice the lack of tea length and longer white/cream plus size dresses suitable as bridal wear. If you could sort that out too with everything else you do! Lol lovely seeing you And your design as always Gifi x

  • Kitty Wood: October 29, 2015

    Definitely next time, everyone seemed to have such a fab day! I meant Georgina’s dress :) they are all beautiful, but that one is something special :) Next time! xxx

  • Kitty Wood: October 29, 2015

    this also makes me happy, love polka dots, yay for Lolly!

  • Gifi Fields: October 29, 2015

    You have been listening too much to that young designer who turned into an older guy! You must have been there when I pulled on, wore and stepped out of the dress! Fortunately, it wasn’t filmed or caught on camera. A real stunner. LOL xox

  • Lollylikes: October 29, 2015

    That is fantastic news! I can’t wait to see what you come up with! The dress I wore to Meadowhall is stunning. I am a sucker for a sweetheart neckline as it does the boobs wonders. I am looking forward to slipping into the new designs and seeing how easy it is to slip out of them! Lol

  • Gifi Fields: October 29, 2015

    Hi Kitty Georgina’s dress though simple is the best dress I have designed in many years. or do you mean the Nancy purple hourglass dress arguably just as good and original. we all would have loved to see you there. Despite the poor quality of hotel it was very enjoyable meeting and seeing so many interesting people, and then the clothes and accessories. You were well missed!
    Next time xox

  • acurvycupcake: October 29, 2015

    StyleXL looked amazing and I’m gutted to have missed both the event and seeing this collection “in the flesh”…. Thank god for Alfie and his camera!
    I adore the velvet maxis. Head-turners for sure! I’m not confident enough with my belly to be wearing one just yet but I’ll be first in line to buy the floral GG dress. So gorgeous. x

  • Gifi Fields: October 29, 2015

    Hi lolly I do do polkadots from time to time. You might have noticed that I tend to leave a lot of that to the out and out vintage guys to do. But you read it here first I am going to do some polkadots just for Lolly because we both like them. I am not a big fan of skater dresses tbh you can get them from any of the high street retailers. You have one of the most beautiful dresses we have ever designed which you were wearing at Meadowhall. That is more our thing. Feminity and flattering, a bit of Hollywood fantasy those really are essential ingredients for us. Hope to see you soon.

  • Gifi Fields: October 29, 2015

    We are going to have a lot of fun with Lollidots ;)

  • Lollylikes: October 29, 2015

    Lollidots! I love it! This needs to be a thing! We need to make it a thing! #lollidots

  • Gifi Fields: October 29, 2015

    Jade Forgive us, as per the post above originally that was the one and only dress we were going to run down the catwalk. GG is a self admittedly an over dresser, so the intent of this dress was to show GG “au natural” in what is I hope a very beautiful but very simple frock that any body can wear and feel like a million dollars.. The other aspect is GG’s back. This is a simple slip on or off, or step into and out of frock. from the new series that I wanted to debut at Style XL and at the same time honour GG’s curves. I owe several ladies dresses. send me a photo of you hopefully wearing a S & J and your size and you can join a list of ladies that I am currently designing dresses for. I need a Jade dress in the collection gifi@coppernob-fashion.com. You don’t happen to be into Lollidots do you?

  • Dāsha: October 29, 2015

    Love this post,thanks for sharing!

  • jademanning: October 29, 2015

    2016?! Nooooo I need pretties in my wardrobe sooner!!

  • jademanning: October 29, 2015

    Spring?! Nooooooo

  • Gifi Fields: October 29, 2015

    Going to have to wait until Spring 16 ie next year for the Georgina dress 2 in 1 dress unless we run it for Australia or South African markets 1st. She is wearing a catwalk version which was the only one we were going to run down the catwalk at Style XL. Georgina’s velvet Queen of Lace dress by Natasha, should be available from end of October.

  • Miss Jade: October 29, 2015

    I love what Georgina is wearing. I am definitely snapping this up when it is out!! <3

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