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London Fashion Week 2016: when is it and who's good to follow? Plus, the most stylish spots to visit

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There's only three weeks to go until London welcomes fashion insiders from around the world for a five-day showcase of the spring/summer 2016 collections by hundreds of designers. From Burberry to Belstaff and Paul Smith to Preen, we'll be bringing you live coverage from the insiders-only event.

Who's good to follow?

We've rounded up the coolest British catwalk stars who should be populating your Instagram feed. From cheery Northerner Sam Rollinson, to buzz-cut beauty Ruth Bell.

How can I get tickets?

Sadly, London Fashion Week is an industry-only event, meaning unless you're a member of the fashion press, buyer or stylist - or one of the many skilled hands needed backstage - you won't find yourself in possession of a ticket.

Where are the shows staged?

Charlotte Dellal
unique prom dresses

The official home of London Fashion Week is within the NCP Car Park on Brewer Street. While it may not sound like the most glamorous of locales, the venue's low-ceiling floors make for a handy hub to house hundreds of shoe, accessory and ready-to-wear designers displaying their new collections, as well as a vast catwalk space. Many designers however, tend to hire private spaces to stage their shows. Each season, Burberry erects a large tent within the grounds of Kensington Gardens, while other brands have been known to take over the Royal Courts of Justice, a disused sorting office and even a meat market.

Who's on the schedule?

Household names such as Paul Smith, Orla Kiely and Julien Macdonald all show on the official schedule, alongside a core of emerging designers.

When did London Fashion Week begin?

In 1971 Tony Porter, 80, thought it was “ridiculous” that Paris and Milan hosted journalists and buyers twice a year, but that London, with its thriving fashion scene, was out of the loop. “There was nowhere for them [press] to go and find everybody in one place and one time in Britain. So I went to an organisation that existed then, which was called the Clothing Export Council of Great Britain, and I went to them, “Don’t you think it’s about time that somebody got this together?” His first fashion week cost £1,000 to get off the ground, had five designers and he hosted international press at his house.

Where to go during London Fashion Week?

We have compiled a list of the 100 fashion hotspots to visit in London, from shops to hotels to restaurants to bars. These are the places where the fash pack will congregate come February.

Natalia Vodianova brings back the Fashionable Fund Fair

Natalia Vodianova and Karlie Kloss are joining forces once again to throw a Fashionable Fund Fair during London Fashion Week. Last year Taylor Swift, Cara Delevingne and Ellie Goulding attended their event, where Karlie had a cookie stand, Natalia manned the kissing booth, Pat McGrath was on face painting duty and Louis Vuitton had their own hook-a-duck. This year they will throw another funfair at Old Billingsgate Market and it's set to be one of the most Instagrammed events of the week. There will be a Dior treasure island hosted by Erin O’Connor, a Givenchy tattoo parlour, a Dom Perignon champagne hoopla, an Audemars Piguet wheel of fortune and a Stella MCartney whack attack. You can buy tickets on nakedheart.org for £1,000 for an admission ticket.

Kanye is rumoured to be performing

News just in: Kanye West is coming to the London Fashion Week. The avid follower of fashion, who claims to have masterminded many fashion staples such as tight jeans, is getting in on the action with a secret gig during the five-day showcase a week after the launch his new album, Waves.

A source told Loaded magazine: "With his album out the week before, it looks like he'd do a show for his hardcore fans while he's over for fashion week, to give SWISH extra underground kudos. He enjoys playing clubs as much as he does the bigger stages when he can." We wonder which venue – and which designer’s show the rapper will no doubt overshine – if the rumour turns out to be true

Johnny Coca’s hotly anticipated Mulberry debut

The Frenchman behind fashion house’s Céline handbags (the much desired, and copied Trio, Trapeze…) has been working his magic behind the scenes at Mulberry for the past seven months. On Sunday 21, the fruits of his labour will be revealed as intends to bring the Somerset-based brand back to form with a catwalk show. The label hasn’t staged a proper runway event since its former creative director, Emma Hill, waved goodbye in 2013. All eyes will be hungrily watching to see his take on a British accessories icon.

Charlotte Olympia's catwalk first

The brand that brought us cat-adorned flat shoes and perspex clutch bags is turning its focus on a catwalk show for the first time. The creative brains behind the label, Charlotte Dellal, certainly knows how to run with a theme, so we're awaiting this showcase eagerly. Stay tuned for updates on the opening day on February 19.

Kendall and Cara's waxy makeover

Nope, we’re not making this up – the model BFFs are entering the Madame Tussauds waxy hall of fame just as the shows kick off. Their statues will be unveiled as part of an immersive package which will allow visitors to experience what fashion week is really about. Cara’s doppelganger is said to be sporting a Saint Laurent dress. Some girls get all the luck.

Alexander McQueen’s return to the capital

The label founded by Lee Alexander McQueen is headquartered in Clerkenwell, but for the past 14 years has presented its collections on the official Paris schedule. McQueen’s early shows in London in the mid-1990s were the stuff of fashion folklore: spine-tingling, theatrical affairs that weren’t rudely interrupted by someone desperately waving their iPad in the air for a good shot. This return to LFW, on Sunday 21, is intended to be a one-season wonder; we expect to see lots of fashion students trying to blag their way in.

See more: purple bridesmaid dresses



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