The July #StyleBattle™ Is Here!

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The July #StyleBattle™ is Here! Photo Credit: Voteforparty | Eris-The-Chaos

Summer is offish here, Shopcaders and you know what that means… it’s time for our July #StyleBattle™ to launch!

Last month’s winners, @styleskittle and @alexandertuffley1 took part in a VIP photo shoot at Shopcade HQ, to be be featured in WEARECOLLISION’s September Issue, and were given tickets to Wireless to enjoy some festi-fun in the sun!

For July, however we are going ALL out. We are stepping up our game and looking for only the most fierce and fabulous fashionistas to become the faces of July.

The winners will be featured all across our social media as the official faces of Shopcade, take part in their very own fashion photoshoot with celeb stylist Fabienne Hebrard, have their make-up done by the pros at Illamasqua, plus have their bouffant expertly quaffed by the artistic team at Rush Hair.

Phew! If that wasn’t enough, the winners will also be walking away with goody bags piled high with pieces from Villain, FYT & CO and more!

So, what do you need to do to win this awesome prize? Well, it’s pretty darn simple. In a nutshell, we want you to fill our app with your top looks on a daily basis!

There are a few rules you need to abide by however; it needs to be a full length look (no close ups of your chin or anything weird) and you MUST use the hashtag #stylebattle to qualify. For the full T&C’s check them out here.

Other than that, go mad! We want to see you all over our app 😉 Here’s the Style Council you need to impress this time around…

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Win Wireless Tickets In Our June Style Battle™!

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Get ready for the June Style Battle™ | Photo Credit: Alexander Federic

Oh yes, it’s that time again stylish Shopcaders! We are on the hunt for the faces of June in our latest, greatest Style Battle™.

This time, however there’s a little twist ‘cos you know, we like the keep things fresh 😉 We want you to showcase your best Festival Style on the app for a chance to win Wireless tickets, plus much, much more!

If you don’t know how it works by now then here’s a quick recap on how to enter…

Step 1: Snap your festival look (full-length please, no up close selfies or half naked pics… keep it clean people!)

Step 2: Upload your look onto the Shopcade app using the hashtag #StyleBattle (no hashtag no entry peeps, so make sure you do it!) and…

Step 3: …Boom! you’re done! Share away to all your social networks, so your friends can get involved as well.

If we like your look we could feature you on the app throughout the competition, so keep on posting! A festival look a day if you feel like it, we’re not fussy! Make sure you check out our T&Cs here for all the deets as well.

What else is in it for you? Well, this month you could be in the chance with winning your very own celebrity style photoshoot, styled by Rachel Holland and have your make-up done by the pros- we’re talking #StyleCouncil faves AOFM Pro no less!

Want to know how you can impress the #StyleCouncil this time round and win this awesome prize? Well then, without any further ado, presenting the June Style Battle™ judges…

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PR Guru Courtney Blackman talks UK/US style with Shopcade

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Photographs by Kate Gorbunova and Sam Atkinson

Courtney Blackman, founder of Forward PR and Managing Director of The Industry London, chats to Shopcade about her unusual Christmas wardrobe this year, hanging out with Kate Nash and why David Gandy is a true gent…

Hi Courtney! Thank you for joining us for this Christmas Special. What’s in your Shopcade Wish List for the season?

Have a peek! @Courtney Blackman

Do you have an ‘it’ fashion item that you are planning to wear for this year’s holidays?

I’m going to Kauai for Christmas – I’ll be in bikinis, cut-offs and t-shirts with a surfboard.

What are your favourite tunes for the festive season?

Kate Nash is putting out a Christmas EP, so obviously the songs on the EP will be my favourites. I’ve also just starting representing indie band Early Morning Rebel from Los Angeles, and while their music isn’t Christmassy it is awesome and I will have it on my iPod over the holidays.

Which film puts you in the spirit of Christmas?

I love the film Bad Santa with Billy Bob Thornton – it’s hilarious. Also, Home Alone and Elf.

What would be your dream holiday destination? Would you prefer Santa’s village or someplace warm and sunny?

Anywhere around the equator! I grew up spending my winters in the British Virgin Islands and The Netherland Antilles. Sun for me please.

Dolce & Gabbana were the designers behind the famous Claridge’s Christmas tree. Who would you choose to design it and why?

Alice Palmer. She’s a knitwear master and I can’t think of anything cosier than a knit Christmas tree – but with Alice’s trademark spikes as such to make it edgy.

What type of Christmas tree would you be?

I would be a Balsam Fir Christmas tree, grown in Nova Scotia and I would be covered in lots of crystal icicle ornaments, white ribbons, white globe ornaments, tiny white fairy lights and star on top.

What is the one thing that you can’t have enough of during Christmas and what is the one thing that you absolutely can’t stand anymore?

Food! I revel in gorging on food. Christmas is permission to really go for it and I do. I could do without the non-stop Christmas advertising everywhere. It makes me feel stressed out.

OK enough of Christmas! Shall we talk business? You started Forward PR in 2004. How has the fashion scene in London changed since then?

Fashion has changed a lot and in some places not at all. We’re still on the antiquated six-month lead-time from shows to retail delivery, but I’m sure that will change soon enough. On the flipside, social media has revolutionised the way the industry interacts, especially from a PR angle. With the launch of Facebook in 2004, Twitter in 2006, Instagram and Pinterest in 2010 and the onslaught of bloggers over the years, fashion has exploded. It’s more transparent and has a larger voice than ever before. Conventional methods of PR have completely shifted. Companies across fashion from designers to photographers to retailers to magazines now have a huge opportunity for direct communication and engagement. All it takes is time… and being a clever communicator.

Can you tell us about The Industry London? What is the concept behind it?

The Industry is a members-only private networking group for fashion professionals. It was launched in order to bring together the people that form the foundation of the fashion community, as often times stylists, milliners, etc. work in solitude, so coming together at regular meetings gives people a chance to interact and create new business together. Our members span the industry from lawyers to bloggers to pattern cutters to filmmakers to manufacturers – emerging to top-level, well-known industry personalities. Our meetings are relaxed and fun and we’re currently working with London’s Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design as our venue partner.

 

THE INDUSTRY DAVID G#AB6DFF

 

You work with celebrities like Kate Nash and you recently hosted a talk with David Gandy. What does it feel like collaborating with all these high-profile people?

Kate Nash is honestly one of the nicest people I’ve ever encountered. Not only is she insanely talented (she writes all her own music, plays piano, guitar, bass, drums… and starred in three films in 2013), she’s so kind with her fans, she’s genuine, honest and generous. Working with someone like Kate is amazing and I feel really lucky to be a part of her team. David Gandy joined us for one of our Industry meetings, where he was interviewed by the legendary Hilary Alexander and he was very charming. He shared so much about ‘brand Gandy’, which was fascinating and he stayed on for ages accommodating every single person that wanted a photograph with him, which was a lot – a true gent

How has your work in fashion changed the way you view this exciting industry?

I love working in fashion. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and working with some of the most creative and respected people in the industry, and some of my closest friends also work in fashion (i.e. superstar fashion and celebrity stylist Rebekah Roy) – it has a tendency of melting into one’s personal life.

You were born in the US. How is London different to NYC when it comes to trends and style?

I was born in Denver and I’ve spent most of my adult life in London, with stints in Central America (Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic) and not really in NYC, but based on visits to the Big Apple (I have family in Manhattan and Brooklyn), I would say New Yorkers dress a bit safer than Londoners. Londoners aren’t afraid to look “creative” and experiment and mix colours, patterns, vintage, designer…I definitely think the way people dress in London is more fun.

Speaking of style, what is the one thing that you wouldn’t want to be seen wearing?

Revealing sandals. I have the most unattractive feet. Ever.

What kind of combinations make you cringe when you see them?

Not really anything. The way someone chooses to express themselves should be completely free and liberating.

Which strategy is best according to you: investing in some quality, yet expensive staples or spend on a lot of cheaper items for a more diverse look?

A bit of both. Having good quality investment pieces in good fabrics is really important, especially as you get older, as quality fabric, good cuts and structure are going to be far more flattering. For testing out seasonal trends, it’s nice to be able to incorporate a selection of high street finds, but I’m not a huge fan of buying too much throwaway fashion. It feels kind of irresponsible.

If you could press a button and control everyone’s taste, what would you make people wear?

Anything they wanted. I couldn’t think of anything more boring than controlling other people’s creativity.

What’s the one thing that you are waiting patiently from a fashion designer to discover/ come up with?

The perfect sandals for unattractive feet!

Want to find out more about Forward PR and The Industry London? Check them here! Forward PR and The Industry London

 





Shopcade gets Spooky with Kate Nash!

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Broadway musicals, vampires, Willow Smith, and vintage clothing all in one interview? For our Halloween special we get to chat all about music, style and horror films with one of our favourite British pop stars, Kate Nash. Oh, and did we mention that she would gladly fight with zombies if she had to? Our kinda gal!

Last year you did a stage version of the Buffy musical episode “Once More With Feeling” for Halloween. What are your plans for this year?

This year I’m in Chicago as part of my American tour. We are all collectively trying to figure out what to go as. There have been talks of Anchorman! We’ll have a day off and my friends’ band FIDLAR are playing just by chance, so it should be awesome!

Who is your favourite villain, style-wise?

Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, because he’s rock ‘n’ roll and a hot villain with a heart and a sense of humour.

What’s the creepiest soundtrack you have ever heard and is there a horror film you would like to write music for?

Probably Nosferatu is the scariest. But, The Exorcist and Halloween are scary too. It would have been cool to do the music for the original Black Christmas, or for The Munsters!

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What about your most epic costume failure and the one time that you really nailed it? I once went as a prostitute…when I was fifteen. And I think my evil clown was the most epic.

What would you describe as your perfect horror film setting? Zombies, aliens, who would you like to fight against?

Zombies are the scariest for sure. I’m so into The Walking Dead. Aliens are the coolest! And this 80s film, ‘Night of the Creeps’ has both! I really like Strange Behaviour aka Dead Kids, which is kind of psycho killer/bad medicine/teenage horror, and there are really creepy masks too. My all-time favourite horror movie though has to be Ginger Snaps. Werewolves and the transformation from girl to woman and girl to werewolf is genius! I think I would like to fight zombies.

Ok, time to talk music. What are the basic ideas behind your new album?

‘Girl Talk’ is definitely a pop record, but I’ve grown and my sound has evolved, so it does feel different. Since I wrote the whole album on the bass, it has more of a raw punk feel, but it’s full of colour, pop harmonies and melodies. It’s been nearly a decade since my first album ‘Made of Bricks’ came out and my voice has matured and can do so much more. I can shout and scream, which I love! I needed a way to be loud and powerful, as I went through a lot personally last year. Music is my craft and my escapism, and ‘Girl Talk’ is my best work to date.

You got to spend time in Los Angeles with Willow Smith. Can you tell us about it?

Willow had been doing some collaborations with Rihanna and Beyoncé, and when she decided she wanted to write some of her own material, her management got in touch with me. I was invited to the Smith house in LA and it was amazing! She is by far the coolest, most stylish 13-year-old that I’ve met. She knows who she is and wants to be. She’s just this cool punk who is starting her career in the music industry and it was fun working with her.

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You would like to do more about the lack of girl bands. What are your plans?

I found out that only 14% of PRS goes to female songwriters and other depressing statistics in relation to women and the music industry, which made me want to get more girls into music. I learned about rock ‘n’ roll camps in New York and Portland and it really inspired me. I wanted to contribute in some way to the United Kingdom and the future of the music industry, so I approached six schools in the UK about starting after school clubs. I visited the schools for about 18 months and worked with the girls on self-esteem issues and lyric sessions, and we had guitar, bass and drum lessons and encouraged them to write their own material. It’s something that I will continue doing as it’s an important part of changing the industry – through education.

You went from the music studio to the film set in order to star in the movie Powder Room. While you are no stranger to acting, what did it feel like this time? Is acting something that you would like to explore more in the future?

I studied acting before I went into music, so it’s not entirely foreign to me and prior to Powder Room, I was in a film called Syrup and one called Greetings from Tim Buckley with Gossip Girl’s Penn Badgley. Powder Room was particularly fun as it’s a British comedy, and I got to work with some amazing girls: Sheridan Smith, Jaime Winstone and Oona Chaplin. I would definitely like to explore more on the acting side. I like performing and entertaining people, whether it’s on stage or in front of the camera.

Could you tell us about Only Gold, the musical that you are planning to create? Where did you get the inspiration from?

The Broadway musical is based on the music from all three of my albums and I’ll be co-writing the musical based on my songs. The story is about a maharajah in Paris in the 1920s, making the choice between love and material things.

So, let’s chat about fashion now! Your style has evolved over the years. What has changed and why?

Everyone’s style changes and evolves. When I first started I was a teenager, so thankfully I don’t look exactly the same! I really enjoy experimenting with fashion. It’s an important part of my stage show. I like mixing high-end fashion with emerging designers and vintage, and my current hairstyle is inspired by Diane Lane’s character Corrine ‘Third Degree’ Burns in the 1980’s film, ‘Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains’.

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What’s in your shopping bag for this season?

I love almost everything from Bora Aksu’s SS14 collection and I’m having a blast wearing Dutch designer Bas Kosters on tour, and I always like sunglasses and shoes from Miu Miu.

You are a big fan of vintage clothing, and you like shopping at places like Paper Dress Vintage. Care to tell us more about your passion for vintage?

When I first discovered vintage clothing, it was an epiphany. Vintage silhouettes suit my body type, and the older fabrics and embellishments can often trump what is available from contemporary design.

What kind of combinations make you cringe when you see them?

I guess I’m not a fashionista in that sense. I like when clothes show someone’s personality, even if it’s not hip or cool, I think it’s cute.

What’s the one thing that you are waiting patiently from a fashion designer to discover?

The perfect mod orange two-piece. And white shoes to go with it.

If you could press a button and control everyone’s taste, what would you make people wear?

Whatever they want. Fashion and style is about personal expression and with so much choice available, you can be anything you want, sartorially and otherwise.

We couldn’t agree more!

Check Kate’s website, My Ignorant Youth here.