Saunt and Sinner x Lauren Gollan

Last Sunday, myself and the #girlboss team from The Scottish Design Exchange; Lynzi Leroy, founder and director, Judith Hamilton-Wright, artist and head of fine art, plus Jodie Given, visual merchandiser and head of product design, attended a wonderful event at The Arches, New Waverley in Edinburgh.  The event was a celebration of a successful creative collaboration between Glasgow fashion brand, Saunt & Sinner (headed by the talented Scottish designer Toni Roddie) digital artist Vincent Wolf, and the Lauren Gollan Academy of Make Up Artistry, coming together to create and promote the Flux collection, combining classic womenswear, digital prints, virtual reality and high fashion make-up looks.

After a drink (or three) and some industry mingling, we got stuck in with trying out the VR headsets, and view the Vincent Wolf digital art exhibition, which gave us an insight into the inspiration behind the contemporary womenswear collection (which you can still buy online here!). 

I was really drawn to the way that a virtual, digital world has been flawlessly interlinked with physical, wearable product. Technology and Fashion has certainly been a hot topic since the Manus x Machina Met Gala, so I think its wonderful to see this high fashion trend being translated into local, accessible designs. 

I couldn’t help but do a little shopping while the rest of the team enjoyed the bespoke DJ set, and came home with a classic Saunt & Sinner brand t-shirt (which I can’t stop wearing!) and the brand’s classic ponyskin buckle choker. 

I also treated my new flat to a print, ready to be framed, depicting a digital art landscape of clean lines, bold shapes, and even snippets of Lauren Gollan make-up looks, creating a really high-fashion, minimalist mixed media aesthetic. It was great to chat with creative director Toni Roddie about this fantastic creative collaboration that flawlessly marries art, technology, fashion and beauty.

After the drinks reception, which marked the end of a mini weekend pop-up shop Toni had been running, we had the chance to experience a make-up and hair masterclass with the Lauren Gollan and Charlie Miller team, demonstrated on models wearing the new collection from Saunt & Sinner, which will be available soon! It as great to see Lauren Gollan, celebrity  make-up artist with a host of catwalk and editorial experience, giving her take on AW/16 beauty trends, such as graphic eyeliner, high gloss lips, nude pallettes, glitter and sparkles. For Edinburgh make-up enthusiasts, Lauren Gollan teaches her renowned techniques at her new academy of make-up artistry in The Arches.

Ruth @ Urbanity xxx

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PaisleyMake Design Festival

PaisleyMake is a new festival of creativity aiming to encouraging people to reconnect with  the heritage and explore the future of textiles and design, in the original home of the iconic Paisley pattern.  Last week I was invited to the blogger preview of the event, which involved a tour of the beautiful Paisley Museum and it’s huge extensive pattern archives within the fascinating environment of huge ancient weaving looms. In addition we had the opportunity to network with industry professionals and view exhibitions and participate in workshops from emerging Scottish fashion, jewellery and interior designers as part of Scotland Redesigned at Paisley Abbey. Finally, my favourite part, we attended an inspiring talk by former Glasgow student Penny Martin, editor-in-cheif of one of the industry’s most intellectual and informed women’s magazines, The Gentlewoman. I even sat next to her in the FROW! 

The festival, consisting of four days of workshops across Renfrewshire celebrating the history of textiles within the area, and encouraging people of all ages to get creative, is part of Paisley’s bid to become the UK City of Culture 2021. To find out more about this initiative, follow @Paisley2021 on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, and explore the #Paisley2021 and #PaisleyMake hashtags. I’ve been involved with Scotland Redesigned projects before and love what they do for the Scottish fashion industry, so I was thrilled that they have partnered with the town, and exhibited their fantastic members to the public in a contemporary, shoppable environment, and even the talented bunch from design incubator Fashion Foundry took part!

Sometimes, opportunities come my way as a Scottish Blogger that I feel hesitant they will be a) relevant to my blog, and b) actually enjoyable/interesting to me as a person. Nobody likes wasting their time getting dolled up for a disappointing event that often involves a lot of travel. Sometimes though, I take a risk and it pays off (big time), in this case, it was an invitation to the blogger preview at Paisley Make. Never having travelled to the small town on the outskirts of Glasgow, and not being hugely interested in textile heritage, I didn’t expect much, but it turned out to be one of  the best networking events I’ve been to, and super inspirational career-wise too, which is timely considering I’ve just started a new university course and I’m getting involved in some exciting new projects,  so I’m feeling really amped up about my future in fashion! Stay tuned for a blog post all about The Gentlewoman soon!

Ruth @ Urbanity xxx
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Boxsmall Edinburgh

Last week the boy and I were invited to go and check out Boxsmall Family Festival on the rooftop of Waverley Mall (with the best views of the Edinburgh skyline you can get!) to enjoy a complimentary round of mini-golf and a delicious meal from one of the many traders at the Box Small market

The wonderful mini-festival, which includes a 9-hole golf course, extensive food and drinks market, giant bungee trampolines and sorbing, as well as stalls by local artists and makers, plus loads of relaxed seating areas to catch some last minute summer sun, is only here until the 28th (Sunday!) so check it out as soon as possible; its hard to miss, being slap bang on Princes street right next to the train station! Located on the roof terrace of Waverley Mall, the Box Small cubes give shoppers and traders a breathtaking view of the Edinburgh city skyline, with access directly from Princes Street. You can even enjoy a fruity cider in the Rekorderlig garden or some gelato from the pop-up sundae bar (we tried the chocolate ice-cream and it was delicious!).

We started our little tour of the market with lunch, of course. Being total foodies and hungry from walking round the city, wrestling through crowds of tourists, we followed our noses to the Crepes and Waffles stand. I opted for a pesto, mozzerella and cherry tomato crepe, while Jack added chicken to his, and my god, we were in foodie heaven for a good half hour. Couldn’t recommend these savoury crepes enough! After re-fueling, we headed over to the golf course, and following a lovely chat with the super-friendly staff, the mini-golf challenge began. Now, I am renowned for being terrible at pretty much every sport, and the last time Jack played golf he ended up in hospital with a flag through his foot, so expectations were low to say the least. It was a close call, but in the end I lost (boo), however, we were both winners really because it was such a laugh and the weather was totally perfect, plus we especially enjoyed being out-golfed by hundreds of small children. Since when are kids good at golf? Anyway, if you fancy one lats weekend of Fringe Festival fun, I strongly suggest a day out at Box Small Edinburgh!

Ruth @ Urbanity xxx
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New Bobbi Brown Flagship

This time last week I attended one of the best blogger events I’ve been to this year (my favourites have got to be the Deliveroo 1st Birthday Party,  Hunted Vintage SS16 launch and the Barburrito Burrito Masterclass!), the launch party for the brand new Edinburgh flagship Bobbi Brown store on George Street. I was really excited to attend as I’ve always really loved Bobbi Brown make-up and skincare products, not only for their foolproof contents but for the stunning packaging. The store itself is decorated and styled to complete brand perfection, and on the night the room was filled with giant balloons and streamers, as well as a female DJ, Prosecco, canapés, goodie bags and even a Haig Club whisky bar, whats not to love?


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Fashion Foundry Social Media Workshop

The Fashion Foundry is a new incubator organisation for emerging Scottish fashion designers, by the Cultural Enterprise Office & Creative Scotland.  I found out about this wonderful initiative, that involves studio and manufacturing space, one to one mentoring and incredible business opportunities, through my friend and colleague at The Scottish Design Exchange,  Piotr Pyrchala, fashion designer behind the contemporary womenswear brand Birds of Prayers, who is now part of the elite group of five young  creative talents from across Scotland receiving bespoke training and support from the Fashion Foundry (read about the launch event here!). Last week I attended their first public workshop, Social Media For International Audiences, in collaboration with Made Brave, a brand-led digital creative agency,  held at the wonderful ISO Design in Glasgow.

What I learned (in a nutshell!)

Essentially, the key to cracking your social media is creating and meintaing a strong, recognisable and memorable brand identity, whether this means having an Intagram Theme (always using the same layout  or filter or frame or colour pallette in your photos), developing a unique tone of voice in your tweets, showing behind-the scenes with live videos on Facebook or using the new Instagram stories. Another really important point is adding a narrative when sharing from other accounts, and when commenting on others’ posts, make sure to really add something to the conversation, rather than a one-word response or simple emoji. In addition, we talked as a group about targeting the right audiences online, analysing your online data (e.g.. views, reach, readers),  and encouraging user-generated content using polls, surveys, open questions, hashtag campaigns and more- any real-time customer feedback is GOLD.  Finally, we learnt about the measurable benefits of collaboration, for example Instagram take overs, becoming a brand ambassador, and refining your feeds to fit with your brand values.

Ruth @ Urbanity xxx

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