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Friday, November 8, 2013

Fide Fashion Week 2013: Love Bonito x Julien Fournie

I won't deny, I had a double take when i was flipping through the pages of URBAN for the Fide Fashion Week schedule. A much loved local webstore pairing up with a French Couturier who had worked for the likes of Celine, Dior and Givenchy ?

Apparently, I was not alone in my skepticism...

Secondly, question: Who the heck is this Julien Fournie? 

Turning to good ol' trusty Google, I learnt that Fournie is a French designer and CEO of his own eponymous haute couture company founded in 2009. He was also the last Creative Director of Paris-based haute couture fashion house Torrente, as well as for Ramosport (a premium coats label). Pretty impressive portfolio, but the show was a sell-out and I thought I'd never see my question answered. 

That is until, my dear friend April (who happens to be with Love,Bonito) gave me a pleasant surprise by putting me on the guestlist. Special shoutout of thanks to April for making it happen!

When we arrived, one word summed it up: PACKED. The whole area was bursting at the seams with many familiar faces from televison and the blogosphere; half the audience had to stand or retreat into one of the Fide suites to watch the live feed on their massive TV screens instead as there was virtually zilch space to move. 

After almost more than an hour long of wait, the show kicked off with an high-energy tempo. Ponytails swishing up in the air, models sashayed down the runway in looks that were truly high-octane glamour. I very much loved the strong look of the tuxedo jumpsuit, and the gold and mesh dress and the off-shoulder red dress with a mermaid flair hem. 

The showcase is a capsule collection of around 15 pieces bearing Fournié’s haute couture experience and enmeshed with the founders' fast-fashion and on-trend knowledge. Despite possessing no formal education in fashion design, save for their designing debuts in 2010 – the entire collection with Fournié was amazingly completed in Paris, over a mere three days in August.

I felt that the collection was a very naughty or nice persona , fluctuating from the prim and proper frock hemlines of the quintessential lady, to the sassy devil my care cuts and fits of the perennial party girl. Looks were timeless, with tried and true easy-to-wear line fitted cuts and flattering necklines.

Maxi gowns were long and in contemporary variations; mermaid tails, racerbacks and cutouts, yet not compromising the DNA of the collection, which was sophisticated glamour.

 The second part of the show was more casul street style. Vibrant, dynamic and lively, outfits.I would have to describe it kind of like if Blair Waldorf and Vanessa Abrams from Gossip Girl had a lovechild and infused both their styles in pop colors.

Designer Julien Fournie expresses his feeling of being a fish out of haute-couture-water, and that doing only ready-to-wear was something complicated to think about. He likens his inspirations to being more like a creative big bang that materialized only because of this meeting between the Love Bonito ladies.

Work first began with scrutinizing into the archives of Love, Bonito collections to understand their style DNA first. Singing the praises of his partners, Fournie credits their constant being on the trend pulse, in order to dish out what appeals to their customers. And being young and beautiful, also made them the perfect incarnation of their brand.

The show ended spectacularly amidst a burst of colourful confetti, with models lining the runway as the beaming founders playfully jaunted down hand-in-hand with Julien Fournie. It was such a joyous atmosphere, and we couldn't help but be drawn into that single magical moment. 

Love Bonito has officially made history!

Looking back at Love Bonito's humble beginnings (long were a time of selling pre-loved clothes and impulse buys), this show was a testament to daring to dream big and the power of asking. According to co-founder Rachel, this ambitious collaboration stemmed from last Fidé Fashion Week. A simple expression of wishing to collaborate with their favourite designer from the lineup became a wish granted by 'fairy godfather' Fide's CEO and founder Dr Frank Cintamani.

The waiting atrium just outside the runway show arena.
Fide Fashion Week takes on modern social media. Users upload pics with the hashtag #fidefw and it would be broadcasted on their live-streaming mega screen. Do you see us? :P

What I wore for Day Two:
Shift dress: Caramelle ,Grey leather clutch: gift, Diamante earrings: Chomel, Shoes: Can't remember

There you have it Singapore, Love,Bonito has done us proud but carving a new mark in the history of Fashion Week... and maybe even inspired hope in like-minded fashion entrepreneurs too.

Could this mean more to come? I'm certainly hoping so :)

The Julien Fournié for Love, Bonito collection is priced between S$50-200 and will retail on in November 2013.

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