Behind The Scenes At The Manchester Arndale SS16 Campaign

When you've grown up twenty minutes from Manchester City Centre, it's hard not to appreciate just how integral Manchester's Arndale Centre is to the city. It's the collective home of some of the cities best fashion, beauty, technology and food stores. You could easily spend the entire day there, finding everything you could possibly need. Over recent years, the centre has stepped up it's game when it comes to the latest on trend fashion brands; working with bloggers and embracing social media. Being a proud Mancunian blogger myself, I was super excited when I was asked if I'd like to have a sneak peak, behind-the-scenes look at Manchester Anrdale's latest SS16 campaign along with another blogger, the lovely Stacey from Style Speaks Louder Than Words

The brief for the campaign was 'Made For Me'; showcasing the wide range of fashion available for all styles, covering all aspects of dress and all easily accessible under one roof; "no fuss, no hassle, it's like it was made just for me". With uber cool marketing agency, Refinery on board, and casting the absolutely stunning Nicole Harrison as the model, I couldn't wait to see what was in store!




The shoot was held at the Spiggs Photography Studio, owned by the campaigns photographer, Ben Spriggs. It was only around 15 minutes from my village, and was situated in what I can only describe as the middle of a field. Little did I know that when I stepped inside, it would be one of the coolest studio spaces I've ever been to (ok only been to one other before) but trust me. I tried to capture just how incredible it was, I hope you can get the feel from the shots above. Everywhere you turned was a Instagram worthy chair or strategically placed tree; a bloggers dream! 

After getting over the amazing space, my attention was soon turned to the excitement of the shoot itself. We were introduced to the campaigns Creative Director, Darren Price, who told us a little about what he had in mind for the finished product. He explained he wanted something for shoppers to be inspired by and aspire to. More high fashion than previous years, yet still attainable to us normal folk. 




Nicole was just stunning, (I was majorly girl crushing) and she looked incredible in all of the looks. It was fascinating to see the logistics of the shoot; the lighting, fan and even the music playing in the background, were all perfectly staged to ensure the pictures were perfect. The energy was fantastic, such a buzz, and incredible to watch it all coming together. We could see the shots instantly on the monitor, non of which looked like they needed even a hint of editing, Nicole was just perfection (okay, I'll stop now!).

The shoot consisted of seven of SS16 top trends; abstract acids, ruffles, statement stripes, orange attitude, high shine, wider legs and monochrome gingham. It truly was heaven. We were talked through the looks by the shoot's stylist, Gemma Harrison and the Arndale's Marketing Co-Ordinator and stylist, Debs Hatfield. Expanding of Darren's vision for something for shopper's to be inspired by, they explained that although every piece was from the brands in the centre, a lot of the looks were exaggerated and had an editorial feel. Obviously the final shoot will be used across the Arndale, so they needed to be bold, bright and high fashion. A lot of people, me included, would be able to select a look or style and hand pick the pieces that would fit our own personal style.




It was a great chance to see the best picks from Manchester's High Street stores. There was an incredible array of pieces from some of the Centre's most popular brands, including Tophsop, H&M and River Island, but the stand out store for me was definitely TK Maxx. I'd forgotten how utterly amazing that place was! Gemma had needed a shopping trolley to contain her choices! One of my favourite pieces had to be the Love Moschino chequered blazer in pink and black. The colours were stunning, and the shape was exquisitely structured. For the pictures, it was thrown over a simple black dress and finished with white sixties sunnies - perfection!




The orange leather blazer was another major hit with me. Orange is going to be massive this spring/summer and the contrast of the blush pink trousers that Gemma paired it with looked amazing on camera. I was also a massive fan of the 'high shine' pieces, including a beautiful sequinned top and metallic silver denim dress from Levis. Yes, some of the looks were definitely OTT, but that's exactly what you want for inspiration. I don't look through Vogue and copy their looks, I use it for inspiration and tailor it to my personal style (and bank balance!) which is exactly the purpose of the shoot. 

After a good half hour swooning over the clothes and accessories, it was on to hair and make up, which was provided by the lovely Michael Richmond. We were lucky enough to get a few questions to the very busy Michael, whilst he was applying another look on the beautiful Nicole. We wanted to know how he got the inspiration for the looks he was creating. Explaining that he hadn't seen the actual clothes for the shoot until that morning, he had planned the looks from the brief. He wanted to stick with the 'high fashion' feel and use make up and hairstyles that were big on the catwalks. He said that with the ever expanding world of the make up blogger and social media, people can see what's 'on trend' instantly, and expect that same contemporary looks from brands. It was amazing to see how quickly he created the new style, and with one quick adjustment, change the whole look.




We finished the afternoon watching the team shoot some more looks. It was such a great experience; I thoroughly enjoyed being with such a creative team that were so enthusiastic in creating a fantastic vision. The fact the this was all for Manchester's Arndale Centre, an iconic place which has had a massive impact on my life as a Northerner, made it all the more special. A massive thank you to Helen from Manchester Arndale and the girls over at Refinery, Katie and Luci for a wonderful experience, I can't wait to see how the final campaign turns out!

Stay tuned to my Instagram and Twitter to find out how you can win a £50 voucher to spend at the Arndale Manchester!

2 comments

  1. Amazing!! I want to go shopping NOW NOW NOW!! Love the Moschino blazer... Swoon! xx

    www.rockonholly.com

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