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Off the record, March 14 2014

Spaced out in Paris and MOTs for bags.

Pretty pairing for Sophie

Singer Sophie Ellis-Bextor is hoping for a hit with her new range of tights for UK hosiery brand Pretty Polly. She marked the launch of the spring 15 collaboration at House of Fraser on Oxford Street, mingling with shoppers who had the first chance to buy. Drapers witnessed no scuffles over stock and there was certainly no murder on the sales floor.


sophie ellis bextor

Space invaders land at H&M’s Paris show

Fashion aliens from planet H&M touched down in the French capital last week, when the Swedish chain unveiled its autumn 15 H&M Studio range during Paris Fashion Week. Model and music producer Caroline de Maigret DJ’d dressed as a sparkling astronaut, while silver spaceships landed in the centre of the catwalk at the Grand Palais venue, all watched by a front row that included musicians Mark Ronson (plus actress/singer wife Joséphine de La Baume) and Solange Knowles (minus sister Beyoncé).


Mark Ronson and Josphine de La Baume and Solange Knowles

It’s time for some handbag TLC

Thrifty designer handbag owners can now make do and mend their favourite leather accessories thanks to the new Handbag Clinic at 382 King’s Road, London. Owners of shabby bags from the likes of Chanel, Jimmy Choo, Hermès and Mulberry can get them restored by having them cleaned, zips added, stitching mended or even the colour changed. Prices start at £24.95 for minor repairs and stitching.


Handbag Clinic

Will I Am’s green deal

Expensive rubbish isn’t what Harrods is usually known for but rapper Will I Am visited Knightsbridge to promote his Ekocycle brand’s new shop-in-shop on the third floor. Ekocycle makes products from recycled cans and bottles in collaboration with brands including MCM, Globe-Trotter, H Brothers and Ecoalf. at the Ekocycle UL launch at Harrods

Dame Zandra is tickled pink

We were not at all surprised that Drapers’ favourite pink-haired designer Zandra Rhodes wore one of her own creations while collecting her Damehood insignia from the Queen at Buck House, but we’re dying to know if she tried to persuade Her Majesty to try a similar outfit. Congrats, Dame Z!


Dame Zandra

McQueen designs are a piece of cake

To mark his V&A retrospective, which opens on March 14, fashion fans can enjoy a slice of Alexander McQueen’s work at the Berkeley Hotel’s Prêt-à-Portea dining room in Knightsbridge this month. His ‘armadillo’ shoes are reimagined as a chocolate biscuit with cream icing and edible sparkles, while Philip Treacy’s butterfly hat from the spring 08 range is recreated in dark chocolate mousse on a sablé Breton (French biscuit) glazed with chocolate and red sugar butterflies. The afternoon tea starts from £41 per person.


Alexander McQueen: Cake and biscuit

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