With the 2nd Sheffield style show approaching this autumn we thought we’d have a chat with organiser and founder Charlotte Calvert to find out more.
How did the Sheffield Style Show start?
I have always had a keen interest in organising events. For the past 5 years I have organised a low key charity night twice a year for a different charity each time, supporting ‘St Luke’s,’ ‘Help for Heroes’, and more recently local Sheffield Charities like ‘Eden Dora Trust’ (Supporting families with children who have acquired brain injury) and ‘Amy’s Retreat’ (supporting families who have children with cancer).
They were usually held on a Thursday evening in a local hotel conference room and I chose a different boutiques to come along and show people the latest lines with a chance to buy the items on the night at a discounted rate. Off the back of this I was fortunate enough to be invited to work at Manchester Fashion Week in May 2014.
I loved the experience, but began to think why does Sheffield not have a big fashion event? There is Manchester and London Fashion week and Birmingham is now host to the 26 years established ‘Clothes Show’.
On my return from Manchester I was already beginning to plan what the Sheffield event would be called and which boutiques and designers I would ask to take part. I spoke to my best friend Cheryl who is a professional lifestyle model (as seen on the ‘Special K’ Box) and asked for her help. 6 Months later Sheffield Style Show took place on the 23rd and 24th November.
It housed 35 exhibitors (pop up shops, selling on the day) and showcased 23 local boutiques and designers on the catwalk over the 2 days. This year we plan to return bigger and better. Our charity this year is Sheffield’s Children’s Hospital.
Where does your love of fashion come from?
I have always be interested in fashion, but I guess from my mum. She is a beauty therapist and loves fashion; she’s always been the first one on the latest trends. She has had so many positive comments on her individual style she started buying 3 or 4 of the same item and selling them to clients after treatments. From there my mum and I started organising clothes parties, taking the latest trends to people’s houses in the evening.
Who are your favourite designers?
I’m not sure I have a favourite I like lots of different designers, although I love local unusual garments which you won’t find in the big chain stores. For example I came across 2 brands I love at Birmingham clothes show about 3 years ago and now I am trying to invite them to take part in Sheffield Style Show 2015.
One line is ‘Blonde and Wise’ created by two female designers, Amy and Lucy, based in Wakefield.
Another is ‘Jolaby’ from Huddersfield. Jolaby did have some pieces featured at our last Sheffield Style Show; ‘Rio’ boutique on Sharrowvale road in Sheffield now stock it.
Would you say Sheffield has a big independent designer and fashion scene?
I know that the Sheffield Hallam university offer a Fashion Design course so Sheffield is already home to many new upcoming designers.
I think we are very lucky to have many independent boutiques in Sheffield which I believe do get over shadowed by the big chain stores. Some people presume that boutiques are more expensive but this is not always the case, in fact you can find some real hidden gem bargains. The whole ethos behind Sheffield Style Show, is to promote the independent designers, local boutiques and Sheffield based online boutiques.
Last year we had many online based designers take part as this was their only opportunity to showcase their lines in front of people in the flesh on our professional models rather than just what you see on screen.
We had men’s line ‘Ten Men Clothing’, and woman’s fashion brand ‘Tassel Boutique’. We also featured professional underwear model Chloe Saxon’s line of stunning evening dresses, ‘Coco’s Couture’. All of the above you would only usually find online.
What can people expect from the Sheffield Style Show?
A chance to come along to see a taster of what Sheffield has to offer in the way of independent boutiques and designers for men, women and children, with a chance to buy on the day at discounted rates. This years event will also feature over thirty different pop up shops not only selling clothing but accessories, handbags, shoes, and luxury gift items for the whole family. So come along and buy all your Christmas gifts in one place, while supporting Sheffield’s Children’s Hospital!
The Sheffield Style Show will take place at High Storrs School on 3rd & 4th October.
Tickets available online at www.SheffieldStyleShow.com
Interview by Sara Hill.
Images courtesy of the Sheffield Style Show.