Autumn is always a busy time in the fashionista’s calendar. September sees the world’s fashion capitals unveil their Spring/Summer collections for the season ahead and of course, Vogue’s infamous ‘September Issue’ gets released. Photographers line the city pavement hoping to catch a glimpse of street style superstars in their natural habitat and buyers, trend forecasters and fashion editors alike sit in the FROW, deciphering which trends will trickle down the hierarchy to make it big in the coming year. While the spotlight might typically be on the likes of London and Milan at this time of year, our own beloved capital had plenty to offer for the fash pack to sink their sartorial teeth into this season.


The Fitzwilliam Hotel was the venue of choice for Belfast Fashion Week’s press launch this year, and I am proud to say I had the pleasure of working alongside Cathy Martin and her team in making the event a success. The show saw the fabulous models of CMPR strut their stuff down a packed foyer filled with stylists, bloggers and the media of Northern Ireland, all raring to go. Armed with my camera in one hand, my stylist’s kit in the other, all while tottering about in my new satin heels (thank you Mango), this fashion editor was ready to review the runway.

The show started strong right out of the gate with power suits commanding the runway. Feminine suiting has proven to be a lasting trend with its classic silhouettes flattering the majority of people. This season, the suit took on a bolder 80’s feel. Wide leg cuts were extremely popular, helping to elongate the leg; making the wearer appear both taller and slimmer.


This led into one of the standout trends of the year: checks. I covered this in last month’s issue of City Belfast Magazine and it has no signs of slowing down. Models were styled using a variety of check patterns, with the black and white window pane look worn by the beautiful Joy Ellis being one of my personal favourites.


The next section of the show focused heavily on prints, with scarf print gracing the runway and animal print making a return for A/W 18. Scarf print is a nice way to give a nod to the heritage trend if tweed and tartan aren’t your thing, and if you have walked past any of the window displays in Belfast City Centre over the last few weeks, you’ll know that animal print has exploded on the high-street. While mixing your animals is considered the ‘edgy way’ to rock the trend at the moment, I would usher a word of warning to those attempting this style. Going overboard can quickly lead into Kat Slater territory, so approach with caution! PSA over and out.


The show concluded with a traditional encore of all the models who walked, which if you have not attended an event like this before, is typically the cue for everyone to get their smart phones out in an attempt to get that perfect boomerang shot for their Insta stories… Myself included.


Overall, the press launch was a raving success. It drew a huge crowd and got more people interested in the fashion scene in Belfast which is always welcome in my books. A glimpse of things to come, the show can be viewed as the taster for West Coast Cooler Fashion Week’s buffet of events happening across October. ‘The Runway Edit’, which showcases the best of designer and high-street pieces is being hosted in Belfast Cathedral on October 19th. The ‘Max Mara Weekend Brunch’ and the ever-popular ‘Sushi Saturday’ events are happening on the 20th and ‘Style Sunday’ rounds off the week on the 21st which is in support of Action Cancer. No doubt I’ll be there, same camera in hand, same stylist kit in tow (seriously, that thing never leaves my side), same killer outfit on and same coverage of course! See you there fellow fashionistas.

To buy your tickets for these upcoming events, visit: www.belfastfashionweek.com

Written by Zara Clark

Images by Brendan Gallagher & Zara Clark

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