The British Fashion Awards 2012 from Valentino to Rita Ora

The British Fashion Awards 2012 was definitely one to remember. From Valentino handing out the first award (he is in town to open his exhibition at Somerset house this morning) to Rita Ora closing out the night performing acoustically on stage, I actually find myself struggling here with a place to start. I suppose I should just start at the beginning.

I had the great pleasure of attending the British Fashion Awards with and Evian. Attending a black tie event with one of the UK’s leading retailers does have it’s advantages. Arriving at 5pm in the evening, we were given the run of their sample closet to choose our attire for the evening. Bless you, My-Wardrobe, for all the beautiful things you stock. Throw in girl-talk, bubbly, hair and makeup and you have the perfect start to Britain’s biggest night in fashion.

We arrived at The Savoy a little later than planned but just on time to slip into our seats for the big show. I must admit that this is not my first time attending the British Fashion Awards. That being said, each year I find myself absorbing the atmosphere and excitement as if it were my first time all over again. You are sitting in a room filled with fashion’s biggest stars, the journalists and bloggers who support them and the celebrities who wear them. It can, at times, be a bit overwhelming.

The night, for most of us, really started when Valentino took to the stage. Introduced appropriately as “The Last Emperor”, Valentino was given the task of presenting the first award,, the Winner of British Style. His beautiful accent left most of us ladies swooning and his mispronunciation of Alexa Chung’s name was barely even noticeable as a result. Yes, Alexa Chung won for the British Fashion Award for British Style, as voted by the general public. She took to the stage and announced her own shock at winning since she doesn’t even live in Britain anymore. Hmmmm… maybe somebody didn’t get the memo?

Of course you will have heard by now that the big winner at the 2012 British Fashion Awards was Stella McCartney. Stella not only won the British Fashion Award for Designer Brand award but also the coveted Designer of the Year. Stella had most of us cheering even louder for Britain with her first acceptance speech, if that’s even possible after the year we’ve had. She told the story of the moment she decided to leave the “famous Paris Fashion House”  she was working for to start her own label. Stella was kind and didn’t mention any names, not even that of the “famous house”, ummm… Chloe,  for which she worked. We all knew Stella’s path and truly no names needed to be exchanged. However, what most people might not know is that the big boss in Paris more or less told Stella she would fail miserably if she were to leave the brand and try to pave her own way in the UK. Well, Mr Big Man, who’s laughing now? Everyone loves an underdog and Stella McCartney stole the hearts of everyone in the auditorium twice over in sharing this inspiring tale.

The celeb factor on stage for the evening was very heavy this year. Salma Hayek presented Stella McCartney with her Designer of the Year award, embracing her as a dear friend as they walked off of the stage together. Other notable presenters included Princess Beatrice, Amber Valetta, Andrea Riseborough, Zaha Hadid, Samantha Cameron, Ronnie Wood,  Ellen Von Unwerth and a heavily pregnant Lily Allen, who announced she had to hurry and present before she “wees herself”. Aw the joys of being a pregnant celebrity.

There were 14 awards presented on the night. Here is a complete list of the winners from start to finish:

Vodafone British Style Award – Alexa Chung
Emerging Talent Award, Ready-to Wear – JW Anderson
Emerging Talent Award, Accessories – Sophie Hulme
Emerging Talent Award, Menswear – Jonathan Saunders
Outstanding Achievement in Fashion – Manolo Blahnik
Red Carpet Award – Roksanda Illincic
Special Recognition – Harold Tillman
Designer Brand – Stella McCartney
Accessory Designer – Nicholas Kirkwood
Model of the Year – Cara Delevingne
New Establishment – Erdem
Menswear Designer – Kim Jones for Louis Vuitton
Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator – Louis Wilson
Designer of the Year – Stella McCartney

Congrats to all the winners and a big thank you to the British Fashion Council, My-Wardrobe and Evian for allowing Fashion Foie Gras to once again rub shoulders with some of the most talented fashion designers the world has to offer.


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