Doina Ciobanu at a launching party in London. Photo: David Benett
Ive always been fascinated by the journalists I insure at style week. I like how serious they appear. They are in their own world, while Im talking to my followers on my two phones. Were both working, but I feel like Im probably having more fun. I love print journalism; I love to feel a publication in my hands; I know some people think its irrelevant these days, but I genuinely hope that is not the case.
The Protector style team asked me to make like a journalist and wear one simple attire, rather than get changed between the reveals. That was a freeing: no desperate hurry to discovery somewhere to change. I even had time to buy a coffee.
At the Julien Macdonald show, it felt very strange to be taking notes, rather than scenes. Its such a tight space on the front row that a notebook and pen were useless. As soon as the clapping had finished, I rushed backstage, as instructed, to grab a quote. Macdonald was friendly, but I was in a crush of other journalists, everyone is muscling in, trying to congratulate him or ask questions. I had to manage all that, and say something intelligent, and take notes, too. Its very different from session a decorator as an influencer, when Ill kiss them on the cheek and tell, I love your clothes, and theyll tell, You look beautiful, and thats it.
I wrote the review on my phone, while walking down the street between reveals. It was stressful. Im used to writing one thing rapidly on Instagram; I dont need to give that a lot of suppose. But a lot of people are going to read this, and theres an additional layer of stress that comes from knowing that its the Guardian.
My next assigning, an Emilia Wickstead report, was harder. We were short of time, so I didnt go backstage to speak to her and had to come up with an analysis on my own. It was the end of the day, I was hungry, I was tired, my brain wasnt working. I started writing the piece on the way home; the deadline seemed impossibly soon and I was anxious to make it good.
I analyse political science and history, so I love understanding the cause of events. Being a journalist for a day “ve given me” a chance to flex those analytic muscles; as an influencer, you simply look at what looks good on people, what you think people would like. Id love to use my brain more in that way in the future, by getting more involved in activism, employing my following for good. But I wouldnt be a journalist. Im an independent soul. Usually, when Im working, Im the brand. As a journalist, its not about you.
Doinas Julien Macdonald review
All hail female empowerment. Or so indicated decorator Julien Macdonald backstage after successfully debuting his autumn/ wintertime 2017 collection.
Female empowerment, feminism and their ilk are the terms du jour for the style set right now. New York fashion week gave collection after collection where womens rights were the focus. But where New Yorks designers offered up feminism in the guise of slogan tees and underwear surely destined for reputation as a hashtag, Macdonald construed it through his notion of a future where technology has such an impact on fashion that clothes are stimulate on demand, tailored to the shape of every individual female.
For Macdonald that is, of course, a particular style of garb and a particular type of woman. One empowered, one confident. If feminism is a thread that runs through Macdonalds winter 2017 collection, its the same feminism that the likes of Emily Ratajkowski can be found celebrating: that a woman can express herself and her person at a time of her select, Laura Mulveys male gaze be damned. Appropriate, then, that Ratajkowski has done much justice to Macdonalds designs before now.
Macdonald does a style and he does it well. His hallmark spiderweb dresses are still to be found, but increasingly with straighter lines and alongside dresses offering a sleeker and more futuristic vision. Macdonald told me that his inspiration was modern architecture, big cities[ and] the metropolis. His autumn/ wintertime 2017 may be inspired by a future scenery, but theres also an air of the imagined future that the likes of Fritz Lang once considered for us. Nostalgia, the current, and the future always go hand in hand.