Haute Couture Fashion Week

I love Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week. And for someone like me who is into Bridal, evening wear (even corsetry) and exquisite craftsmanship it would be the ultimate goal and highlight of ones career to be able to show my collections for that.

And that such honour is only bestowed upon designers who have been elected by the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. For more information on Haute Couture here is a great article by Eluxe Mangazine. And just so you can see how prestige it is, Fashion Designers/Brand Ralph & Russo became the first and only British house to be elected by the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture to show its collection on the official schedule at Paris Haute Couture Week, alongside brands such as ChanelDior and Valentino.

Enough about that, here are some of my favourite look from the couture designer Spring/Summer 16 from Sun 24 – Thu 28 Jan 16.  (oh and key for some of the designers is their final piece The Bride (great article on fashionista about that final piece).

And keep scrolling because I’ve saved the best for last. 🙂

Sunday January 24, 2016
Atelier Versace:


Monday January 25, 2016
Dice Kayek:

Serkan Cura – Images coming soon
Christian Dior:

Ralph & Russo – Images coming soon
Giambattista Valli:

Tuesday January 26, 2016

Stéphane Rolland – Images coming soon
Julien Fournié – Images coming soon
Yiqing Yin:

Giorgio Armani Privé:

Alexandre Vauthier:


Wednesday January 27, 2016
Elie Saab:

Ilja – Images coming soon
Jean Paul Gaultier:

Ulyana Sergeenko:


Zuhair Murad:

Closing  Guo Pei – Images coming soon

Here are some I left off;

Alexis Mabille
Bouchra Jarrar
Maison Margiela

Franck Sorbier
Viktor & Rolf

My next post will have to be about The Bride

Monique. S

All images taken from Vogue.com.



Fun @ work

Something a little different for my readers.

I work at Theatre Royal Stratford East in the Marketing department and have been lucky enough to flex my creative muscles thanks to my manager.

For our last two pantos I have been able to do a behind the scenes costumes piece for our Panto programmes. This entails for a couple of weeks working closely with the costume (and set) designer Harriet Barsby, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

Below is my work for Beauty and the Beast and Robin Hood.

So after checking with Harriet shes happy for me to do this project and letting her know what my deadline is, I send through a short design brief to the designers letting them know what I am looking to do and also a couple of examples. Beauty

This is then followed by the questions I will be sending through to Harriet an also copy for the page.

beauy 2

As I am a visual person I also send through a mock up of how I would like the page to look.

page template.jpg

And here is the final page which I am very proud of:

Costume page VF.jpg

Robin Hood.

For Robin Hood it was very similar, using the artwork we already have I sent through a designer brief to the designers and explained that I was doing a behind the scenes costume pieces like the year before.




and here is how I wanted it laid out, which I sent through to the designers:

Panto page_edited-1.jpg

And again after little big of back and forth with the designers here is the final page:


Proud of these pages and really enjoyed working on them, it even got mentioned in West End Wilma’s review for Robin Hood.

Hope you enjoyed this insight.

Monique S

My 10 Year Plan

Side Note: This did start off as a 5 year plan but as I started listings all the things I wanted to achieve it didn’t quite seem realistic that in 5 years I’d be at the end of this particular journey and have my own bridal store up and running. (So all in all, this was a useful exercise for me)

They say if you want something you have visualise it, speak it into existences and write it down (I say they, I’ve just heard this before).

For me my 10 year plans consists of knowing what I want and roughly when I want that to happen.

I can literally see myself at the end of my journey, sitting in the back of my bridal boutique, teaching student different sewing techniques while my colleagues see to customers in the front, knowing that I need to pull my sketches together, as I have a client coming in, in the afternoon to go through designs for her perfect dress.

That particular vision is not cloudy at all. What is unclear is how I get there which is why it’s important to write it all down.  For me it’s easier to work backwards, as I already know where I want to end up.

I’ve never really shared any of this before and feel a little exposed in doing so, but hey if I don’t speak this into the universe or write this into existence then it may never happen.

So here goes:


Goal: Start up my own website
Perfect my knowledge of women bodies, curves and fabrics used for lingerie.
Experiment on making bespoke pattern pieces.
From research design a 7 piece collection (which will also include harnesses and nipple pasties), to have sketches, patterns and mock-up of all pieces.
Finish collection by June.
Put together a lookbook of final pieces this includes finding models and doing a photoshoot to be finished by July
Start on setting up website to have it finished late August, including promoting a launch date.
Website launch date 1 September
November To make festive lingerie pieces.


Goal: Focus on Corsety
To be able to make bespoke patterns from having a better understanding of women bodies and contour fashion from my research from the previous year.
Research into different fabrics used for corsetry
Make a selection of sample pieces (OTR) to be sold on my website
From August start taking custom orders


Goal: Sell lingerie and corsets
To carry on producing new lingerie collections
To still be making corsets.
To have a steady income from this
To start to experiment with bridal wear, researching into different silhouettes and fabrics.


Goal: To be taking Prom dress Orders


Goal: Put a business plan together
To start on a business plan.
To look at location, size and cost.


Goal: Get a start-up loan
Rent a store
Start decorating


Goal:  Open Bridal Boutique


Goal: Not Fail


Goal: Become a teaching school


Goal: Successfully run my business

Started to get a little lost near the end, as I said I know where I want to end up but the path is a little fuzzy but I will find my way. Thinking I might do a vision board next.


Monique S XxX

My journey so far…

So I suppose I should give you a little bit of background information on where I’m at creative and artistically.

I went to University to study Fashion Design but it wasn’t for me so I left, (will explain this more in another post). After which I took time out (over a year to be more precise), because I wasn’t really feeling that inspired.

A year or so after experimenting (making dresses, skirts and a couple of blazers which I am very proud of) and also selling a couple of garments, I decided it was now or never, I was going to develop my skills and make my dream a reality.

But for this I would have to take a step back and remember why I wanted to get into fashion. I’m a girly girl, so growing up I was into princesses (Disney), big dresses and all that fluffy stuff, which is where my love of bridal gowns come from, but from within bridal gowns I just loved corsets. I loved the structure of them, the different fabrics and embellishments and most importantly the shape they gave women.

From researching into corsetry I could see I’d have to take a closer look into the female body and the way it works and the different shapes, which got me interested in lingerie and not just corsetry. (If I’m going to have to learn more about the female body then I might as well have fun and experiment with fashion).

The females body is amazing anyway, our bodies can withstand so much and have the ability to nature life. It is not something we should have to hide,it should be celebrated.
We are told to be happy and confident with our bodies, yet are also told if we are not the right size or shape it should be covered up, we can take pictures in our bikini’s and that is acceptable but in our underwear we are judged and its a shame that in 2015 there is till such a big taboo around this.

So aside from wanting to make women feel like princesses for one special day, we should feel sexy and special all the time. Why not have lovely underwear or a beautiful corset on under your tracksuit…

Why is it we feel its only for special occasions?

Monique S XxX

Start of my Journey

FullSizeRenderI’m an upcoming Fashion Designer, specialising in Lingerie, Corsetry and Bridal wear.

This blog is documentation of my journey and how I intend to start my own fashion label, my own online boutique and eventually store.

I plan to show step by step of how I achieve this, from studying the female body, researching fabrics, travelling the world for inspiration, putting together collections, the design an making process and most of all what it takes to start up your very own business.

Please bear with me as I will be learning along the way, but I hope some people find this useful, and gives you tips of what to and what not to do on your very own journey.

Lot of Love,
Monique S XxX