Mercedes’ Marvellous Mondays… The Enterprise #Fashion #Festival…
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An almost electric atmosphere, the smell of sweets and candy in the air, pop up shops full of fashionable clothing stalls and a small circus theme going on with people on stilts and dancing in the air in hoops tied to huge poles.
That was the scene that greeted me and my children on Saturday the 23rd of June as we went to check out all the hubbub which was happening at The Enterprise Centre in Eastbourne.
I had seen the event advertised on Facebook and social media and being the nosey-parker that I am, and a fellow fashionista I decided to drag the kids along whilst daddy was at work. I was a little pessimistic when I arrived, the scene was great for me as an adult, but I could already see in the kids faces that this was going to be a boring couple of hours whilst mummy done her thing. That was until a woman from the charity ‘Embrace’, approached us as we passed her stall, “Would the girls like to design their own T-shirt? And maybe show it off on the Catwalk?” Instantly my eldest’s eyes lit up as she is a little fashion guru at school and would love the chance to say she had modelled something she made on a Catwalk. My youngest was a little less thrilled but she follows her big sister round and always does what she does.
So, we sat in a little tent like structure with the Embrace woman and another woman, who had a disability but desperately wanted to make a top for a child in need. We all chatted as the girls were given a top and some fabric pens to design their tops with, one of mine designed one with a firework and a cute little rocket, the other went for a rainbow, sun in the sky and a lovely purple flower in the centre of it all.
The woman was so pleased with their shirts and my small donation to the charity that she then gave them some bracelets to design too.
Once finished both my cheeky monkeys stood on the pretty little false grass and cherry blossom covered Catwalk, my older one obviously loving to strut her stuff more than the younger one.
Next it was mummy’s turn to do something, ‘SHOPPING!’ There were many stalls all lined up and situated around the Catwalk almost framing it with all the fashionable things.
The first stall I went to had a collection of small yet unique array of children’s clothing by ‘Primrose Jones’. The fabrics were soft, colourful and daring, some with skulls and crossbones, others with adorable little bunnies and animals. There was even a small top with a Harry Potter theme to it, which if I knew someone with a 9-month old they could have very well ended up with it, but alas I don’t, and my kids are still small but more grown up than a 9-month old. Then I ventured to the stall which was a big part of the fashion show, The ‘Sussex Downs College’ stall. This is the college situated in Eastbourne at Cross levels way, where all the students putting on the 2pm Catwalk show had trained and made their unique designs and it was great to talk and discuss things with one of their teachers who showed me an array of bags they had designed, a booklet with a sneak peek at some of the students and their work and about a previous show they had put on.
I admit it was fascinating to read through the booklet as it detailed things about the fashion students you wouldn’t normally get to know, for example: Where they got their inspiration from, ‘Period Poverty’, ‘Asian Culture’, ‘Body paint and flowers’, ‘Pollution’, ‘Pulp Fiction’ , ‘Senses in love’ , ‘Imagery from Poems’ , ‘British Spring Cleaning’ and many more ideas which I would have otherwise not known or even understood when the clothes came down the Catwalk. I have to say, after reading it I did see their work stand out and understood their concepts.
Lastly before the show came a visit to the sweet stall by ‘Sweet Circus’, who were the culprits accused of giving great hoop performances, jumping stilts people and bubble blowing mayhem. I may have bribed my kids a little with a treat to some sweets, in return of good behaviour so I could watch the Catwalk show and take some photos of the students that flaunted their stuff down the grassy Catwalk. Whilst we waited for the students to be ready a group of dancers appeared and grooved and jived to some music, twisting and turning to keep us all entertained these wonderful dancers were ‘The Eastbourne Swing Jive’. A little old fashioned for my girls, but my nan who told me later on that evening that she had sneaked into town for a peek but didn’t see us in the crowd loved it, and even had a little dance by the side-lines.
Soon the music changed to a more thumping and modern tone and the first fashion student and #Catwalk model appeared! I was in awe at these students flaunting their individual styles out for the world to see, I would not have the guts for that, but they did it with flair and ease. Each one of them strolling under the Cherry Blossoms and up the Grassy Catwalk to the end where they turned each side for all of us watching to see the intricate details in the clothing either with the stitching, the shimmering fabric, printed colours and shapes and the odd frilly bit here and there. Some of the clothing was a little ‘Out there’, like with a lot of fashion designers and Catwalk shows but you could see the imagination there, but some of it I could see in the shops such as ‘Top Shop’, ‘New Look’ and ‘River Island’. Some of my personal favourites from their designs were: The green and almost leafy looking dungarees, the black and white almost leopard looking guys trousers (Which I think are from a unisex design), a white slanted dress top with a black twig like pattern going through it, some red silky looking trousers which frilled out at the top of the waist and a men’s black and white half and half top with very bold arm designs and swirls. Those were the main ones that stood out to me but all of them were fabulous in their own way.
All in all, me and the kids had a great few hours out on what could have been a boring Saturday at home doing housework and watching #Spongebob. I liked how they made it child friendly with the ‘Embrace’, stall which got them making their own fashion things and of course the wicked sweet stall. But there was of course a mix, so the adults who didn’t have children didn’t feel overwhelmed by a horde of children running around like hooligans. I do have to add that ‘The Enterprise Centre’ this year has become a bit of a hub for the town with many events happening in or around the centre and with it’s awesome location next to the train station and with ample parking I would say its one of the places to visit if you’re in or around Eastbourne. It has some fabulous shops inside to visit and places to eat, such as ‘The Yummy Noodle Bar’, ‘The Makery – Which has some stunning art pieces inside’ and ‘Bella’s Secret – Wedding / Celebration cakes’. All of it, a must see, or a must eat!!!