Monday, 23 January 2012

South African fashion designer Alexis Barrell makes UK debut

South African born fashion designer Alexis Barrell has lived and worked in many cities around the world and her next stop is London. And to be more precise – the ultra chic Bluebird Emporium in Chelsea on the Kings Road.

Alexis love of travel shows in her collections with SS11 sailing around the Cycladic islands and AW11/12 taking in the culture of Parisian theatres.

For her SS12 collection she is talking Italian and takes inspiration from the romantic city of Naples – a love story set in the messy, chaotic town of Naples.

The colour palette is ice cream sorbet colours of mint, peach, vanilla, coffee and a touch of chocolate.

The style has a 1950’s feel with high waist full skirts and heart shaped necklines

For her print inspiration she travels north to the Venetian island of Murano and looks at the intricate designs of Murano glass especially in the 1950s era.

The sculptural forms of her hats are inspired by Italian mid-century lightening design with its simple geometric lines, cone shapes and fun space age atomic styles embellishments.

Alexis’ speciality is the construction of very light floaty and delicate fabrics which she sometimes likes to combine with the harder tougher fabric of leather.

Prices range from £120 to £600 and her collection will be available from mid February.

More images of the collection at

Alexis studied architecture in Cape Town, achieved a distinction in fashion design at the Istituto Marangoni in Paris and then perfected the art of draping with bias-cut silks and seamless forms under the guidance of couturier Marc Bouwer in New York. In 2010 she founded her own label in Greece.

Future designs will include menswear pieces and a capsule African luxury collection.

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