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Fashion fix

It might be over (sob!) but we relive the highlights of Gok’s latest TV triumph.

Offering a fresh and fun insight into everything from designer style to high street chic, Fashion Fix saw Gok and his team get up close and personal with stellar celebs, top designers and the general public.

Each week, Gok was tasked with interpreting a different trend, such as business dress, red carpet style and beachwear, using only high street clothes and a budget of £200 per outfit. ‘It’s not necessarily about finding bargains,’ Gok said at the time, ‘it’s about putting the clothes together for less. I have to style the whole outfit, including shoes and accessories, all the customising and everything else.’

Meanwhile, top fashion buyers were given the same challenge but no budget – allowing them to pick pieces from the likes of Yves Saint Laurent, Miu Miu and Christopher Kane. These experts included Marigay McKee, fashion and beauty director at Harrods, Lina Basma, fashion buyer for Selfridges, Erin Mullaney, fashion buyer for Browns and Brix Smith-Start, co-founder and buyer for Start Boutique.

The challenge culminated in a weekly fashion face-off in which the studio audience were asked to vote for their preferred collection – without knowing which was designer and which was Gok’s. And – proving that you don’t need to spend a fortune to look fabulous (girlfriend!) – Gok’s high street style came out on top eight out of eight times.

The Celebs
Each week, Gok was granted access to the lives and wardrobes of some truly iconic stars from the world of fashion and entertainment, including Geri Halliwell, Joan Collins, Kelly Osbourne, Mischa Barton, Dannii Minogue, Lorraine Kelly, Lulu and Jamelia. ‘Celebs are exposed to so many different genres of fashion,’ Gok commented, ‘but a lot of them never have the opportunity to talk about their own personal style, and how their image has helped their career. I think they’ve really enjoyed the chance to talk about the clothes they love, so they’ve all been really helpful, and come on the show and had some fun.’
As Gok rummaged through each star’s clothes and accessories, they chatted about their style and fashion must-haves. Here’s how some of his celebrity guests got on:

Kelly Osbourne
During the MTV series The Osbournes, Kelly became known for her grungy, punky look and her ever-changing hair, but she has since developed into a real fashionista. During Gok’s afternoon with Kelly, she revealed that the most expensive item she owns is a $27,000 coat – and she hasn’t even worn it yet! But she also confessed that she only ever buys jeans from Topshop.

Mischa Barton
Mischa rose to fame with the hit series The OC, and has since become something of a celebrity style icon.

Gok met up with her at a chic Parisian hotel, where they talked about Mischa’s love for all things vintage. ‘It’s the story to the pieces that matter so much’ she explained. Even the outfit she had on that day was vintage – a tee from the vintage store What Goes Around Comes Around in New York, and jean leggings she got in Japan.

Mischa also talked about her new handbag collection that went on sale in selected department stores in July. And when Gok took a peek in her wardrobe she proudly showed off two of her favourite jackets – one given to her by top designer, Roberto Cavalli, and a gorgeous leather Thomas Wylde one!

Lorraine Kelly
Queen of morning television, Lorraine invited Gok onto her LK Today set, and they chatted frankly about Lorraine’s fashion crimes over the years. On the rail of clothes in wardrobe, Gok unearthed some truly hideous items including brightly coloured power suits and a tartan print jacket with shoulder pads. Lorraine confessed she’s been harbouring some of these terrible outfits since the 1980s and cannot bear to part with them!

One star who has been to more red carpet events than most is Lulu, and when Gok went to meet her at her home, he was stunned at her amazing walk-in wardrobe. He headed straight for a red Alexander McQueen dress that Lulu revealed she’s worn twice – once to Elton John’s wedding. Like Lorraine, Lulu too revealed some hidden howlers, including a gold sequinned shrug, which Gok deemed very bling and over-the-top. And as for her knicker drawer, we’ve never seen anything so organised and tidy!

Dannii Minogue
Admitting to being a ‘racy’ dresser when she was younger, Dannii took Gok shopping to one of her fave shoe shops, Giuseppe Zanotti, where you can expect to pay between £400 and £900 for a pair of sassy killer heels.

Looking in her wardrobe, Dannii showed off a fair few couture dresses, some of which haven’t even been worn yet! One gothic style gown really stood out as its lining was made to match to Dannii’s skin tone!

The co-host
Former model, Alexa, is, at 24, already something of a style icon. Her role as roving reporter for Fashion Fixsaw her jetsetting around the globe to interview top designers, and hitting the streets (and rugby pitches) of the UK to roadtest wardrobe staples. Here, Alexa talks to journalist Benjie Goodhart about all things fashion.

How did your involvement in Fashion Fix come about?
Lots of different fashion programmes have approached me to get involved, but none of them seemed as appealing as this one, particularly because the names we have access to are so big. From my point of view, it encompasses everything that I’m interested in – it’s all about fashion, but it’s got the same elements of irreverence and cheekiness that Popworld had.

Describe your role on the show?
Well Gok’s the one out on the high street talking to people, and I get packed off to interview designers. I’m happy with my deal – I get to go to cities like Florence and Milan.

Did you already know Gok before filming? I
have actually worked with Gok before – when I was modelling and he was styling. We did a fashion shoot together for South African Elle or something. He was really nice. I was going to an event or a premiere that evening, and he said I could borrow a dress. He was really sweet.

You’ve been named in countless ‘Best Dressed’ lists. How long do you spend getting ready before going out? About 15 minutes. I get changed about three times a day, because I’ve got a really short attention span, but actually, when it comes to working out what to wear, it doesn’t take me long at all. I’m not really someone who spends hours and hours doing hair and make-up. That’s why I’ve got a signature look that takes me five minutes. It’s to do with laziness, not hankering after a well-thought-out look. I can’t ever be arsed to brush my hair, and I’m good at drawing, so I just put my eyeliner on and mush my hair up a bit, and it’s done.

What’s the most you’ve ever spent on an item of clothing?
I’m moderate with what I buy. I don’t really splash out too much, and luckily people give me things, or lend them to me if they are really expensive. Handbags I spend quite a lot on. The most expensive thing is probably a Mulberry handbag, for £600 or something.

What’s your favourite item in your wardrobe at the moment?
My classic Chanel ballet pumps, and I wear them with everything. They cost £200, but that’s fine because I literally wear them everyday.

What’s the archetypal fashion no-no in your eyes?
I hate it when girls wear leggings under dresses. And I really don’t like halter-neck dresses. Oh, and Boho belts slung low. There’s quite a lot I don’t like.

The travelling catwalk
Fashion Fix saw Gok travel the country, on a mission to find the UK’s most stylish person. He trawled the high streets of cities like Cardiff, Bristol, Birmingham, Liverpool, Edinburgh, Newcastle and Brighton to discover Britain’s fashionistas-in-waiting. ‘We stop people and analyse their outfits,’ Gok explained at the time. ‘It’s brilliant; you see so many different styles, so many different walks of life. It’s a real insight into the way people dress and it’s really interesting. I’ve discovered that geographically, people dress differently as well.’ Gok chose a select few to strut their stuff on the travelling catwalk, before picking a winner from each city, who was then invited to the grand final.

Episode eight saw all the finalists walk down the studio catwalk and Gok chose an overall winner. Lucy Waite, was crowned the most stylish person in the UK and won a great prize – a trip to the fashion capital of New York.

The Winner
Lucy Waite, 20, from Birmingham, was picked by Gok as the UK’s most stylish person, and her 60s look is inspired by Twiggy.

How do you feel being the overall winner?
I’m elated. It’s a real achievement for me. I’m so happy that I have been recognised for my style in front of all these people. And I am incredibly excited to be heading to New York.

What are you looking forward to seeing there?
Patricia Field (the stylist for Sex and the City) has her own boutique. I definitely want to go shopping there. I also want to do all the touristy things like going up the Empire State building and seeing the Statue of Liberty.

What item are you most excited about buying in New York?
I’ve already decided I’m definitely going to buy myself a Chanel 255 bag.

Best of the road test
Wardrobe must-haves put through their paces Alexa put high heels to the test in episode one, as women raced down a sports track wearing various designer heels.

The winner was United Nude heels, at

Episode two saw swimsuits put through their paces by a team of synchronised swimmers. Not all responded well to the routine and there were a few boob slips. The winner was a cutout swimsuit from Swimhut.

Alexa got down and dirty with some rugby players in episode four, testing supposedly invincible two-piece suits. After a tough game, some suits showed signs of wear and tear, but Alexa also wanted to find out how well they’d scrub up, so the men stripped off and the suits went in the washing machine. Eight suits including those from Marks & Spencer, Debenhams and Gurteen passed the test.

Written By Carly Rigley
Photographs: Adam Lawrence
First Published in At Home with Gok Wan, October 2008

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