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Deals & Steals

Benefit Cosmetics LLC

New York, London, Paris and Milan are known as the holy quadrilogy of fashion, playing host to some of the world's biggest and most respected fashion houses and designers on their fashion week runways. However, some of the most innovative and exciting designs can be found at less prolific fashion weeks like Stockholm’s Fashion Week By Berns.

Presenting the work of local designers in a comprehensive schedule, I struggled to refine my review of the week into any kind of concise structure. Frustrated that I couldn’t rant for seven odd pages on the praises of Swedish design, I resigned myself to choosing a mere few of my favourites, and here I shall regale you with musings on the inspiring goings on of Fashion Week By Berns.

One of Sweden’s best known sartorial exports, Acne, threw me from my feet, well and truly knocking the wind out of me. I don’t know where to start; perhaps at the sky high Perspex platforms? Or the garishly ugly wallpaper magically transformed into the most desirable of dresses? Or maybe it was just the devil may care, rock’n’roll attitude that oozed from the collection, teasing me in my conventional bubble and daring me to stick it to the man.

That same attitude filtered into the designs of Whyred and Carin Wester. While Whyred opted for a nonchalant androgyny, Carin Wester took a more feminine approach to rebellion, adding ample edge with sheer blouses, leather pants and velvet everything. Carin Wester’s collection also featured the must have shade of the year-delicate nude- juxtaposed with bold colours and heavy boots for a striking and effective combination of proportion.

Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair did not fail to deliver with their usual avant-garde designs, as volume played on volume to create fantastical shapes, inspiring the imagination with images of dark, malignant fairytale stepmothers. Fairy tales were also the order of the day at blog sensation Minimarket, whose quirky designs were characterized with references to popular fairy tales. Babydoll dresses in block colours became a cool little red riding hood and a deceptively delicate wolf in sheep’s clothing.

My final favourite pick was Tiger Of Sweden; a collection designed for the modern Tsarina. The Russian mood was strong as models were styled in layers of velvet and leather featuring woolen hats and leather gloves, the perfect combination for a winter of espionage in Moscow.

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