London fashion week was held September 14 to 17, all over the greater London area. Change is the theme of the season as the UK deals with Brexit delays and a possible no deal outcome in late October. But as the pound’s value fluctuates, therefore influencing shopping habits, on a positive note, there’s a push from designers to open more factories and make clothing in the UK, which would benefit the industry. SS20 promoted inclusiveness and very, very wild creativity. See some of the top runway styles, and of course, a couple where you may need to shield your eyes (I warned you here). Don’t forget to tune back in for full length show videos.
Temperley London offered a posh but sweet collection of day wear celebrating decoration. Deep earth tones and soft pastels played well in classy prints. I loved the cardigan/dress knitwear combinations most. Romantic notes were hit with Victorian style ruffles along the necklines, cuffs and various ruching. Silk and poplin dresses, jersey kimonos shared from a helping of Venetian influence and tarot cards. Delicate embroideries, a dash of glitter and tulle juxtaposed against a play on the Canadian tuxedo and utilitarian outerwear.
This mix of pragmatism and piquant ideals made for a great variety of options. I mentioned in the NYFW post that I’ve really enjoyed those hodge podge collections. They’re optimistic and can co-mingle with other great pieces, sort of playing on the idea of a capsule.
Making it in fashion is one thing, and having the power to stay is another. Victoria Beckham isn’t bothered by either in this graceful 70’s infused spring collection. Vivid colors and volume don’t overwhelm when expertly layered and paired with neutrals. It was a confident and composed, and visually stunning. Plunging necklines were left bare or paired with a contrasting top or worn over a turtleneck for that fashionable boost. (A great idea, for temperamental spring weather, too). A mix of business and leisure, this line included the likes of caftan and languid dresses, but never forget your power suit. Thanks for the reminder that a woman can be strong and like pretty things VB!
Sportswear and ideas of leisure came to be bloviated and sloppy at Natasha Zinko. A pocketed, front zip-up mini dress and similar colored boiler jumpsuit were saviour’s amongst a bandana frenzy. Unfortunately, the bandana idea only got worse as the collection filled out featured as tie tops, duster jackets, even bermuda style shorts. The collection was made from recycled and upcycled material, so I’ll give them a thumbs up, but there has to be a better way than ill assorted patchwork. Also, socks and flip flops are absolutely 100% never ever allowed, ever.
Molly Goddard is being featured in the British Academy of Film and TV Arts exhibit in London. Although the frilly pink dress featured on Killing Eve was one of my least favorites, it was made for Villanelle. And though that frilly, voluminous tulle isn’t so much my speed, it was tolerable as a featured part of this runway in a more streamlined silhouette. Even a large circle skirt pared with a billowy crop top was vociferous, even if it might be reaching for the moon. Paneled jackets and ribbon embellished sweaters were much more up my alley, while pin tucked tops and skirts and ruffled taffeta frocks weren’t so palatable. Crossbody bags and denim were new featured pieces this season, so maybe there is a shift in the winds for future seasons. Or we’re just privileged to see some depth from this brand.
Erdem was inspired by Tina Modotti, a silent movie actress who joined the communist party in Mexico. Due to her political ideology, she seemed like an odd choice for a muse. Erdem Moralioglu said he chose her because she was a romantic, revolutionary woman of principle. The clothing had exaggerated shape with tasteful fringe, heritage and strength. All these elements combined to make a very beautiful collection. The beaded earrings and brooches gave it all an extra special touch.
Bucket List item:
Mixed media jackets from Ports 1961
My least favorite runway from London was from Simone Rocha. Despite a red sequined gown, it was a folklore storytelling of Celtic wren boys. Outfits that ballooned out were very, very vintage. Rounded out shapes were physically meant to represent a bird. Crocheted pieces and rafia straw bags further fit into the theme. It may have made for an interesting play for cultural profoundness, but would have been better in smaller doses, perhaps.
While Thornton by Preen’s composition was of sustainably sourced viscose and Georgette made from recycled bottles, it felt mostly vacuous. However, the flutter-y blue dress was a standout. 16 Arlington went overboard with the feathers and fringe. On the bright side, I kind of like the feathered cuffs against a plain hem and collar, and feathers are usually nonnegotiable for me. Western elements from Shrimps felt a bit too kitschy for me as well.
Chalayan’s odd avant garde attire just lost me completely while Richard Quinn went heavy handed on the volume. Christopher Kane’s overall aesthetic wasn’t horrific, but it definitely got weird. Finally, JW Andersen was another story telling collection with folklore elements of goddesses; crystal belts, rope bras and hooded cotton tunics. Creative, but not so viable. Though upon a second look, if some of the runway bravado is stripped away, it seems pretty wearable. I guess it’s just up to the individual. What did you think about London fashion week?
Photos courtesy of Vogue, Elle and WWD