Monday at London Fashion Week sees some of the capital’s biggest names putting on a show (including Burberry - read that review here). Here are the designers who are doing us proud.
An Erdem show is a magical experience. Beforehand, we editors always wonder what wistful land he will be whisking us off to to showcase his latest collection (last season was The Railway Children, before that it was 1950s living rooms). This season, we walked through a set that felt like an abandoned manor house to get to our seats. It was littered with vintage curiosities - velvet-covered kissing seats, chandeliers resting as though they’d fallen to the floor thirty years ago, an upturned grand piano - I don’t think it was actually dusty but the draped fabrics casting shadowy light certainly felt like dust sheets. With a soundtrack of dialogue taken from Hitchcock’s classic adaptation of Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca, the collection had a 1940s feel to match; models walked in dress after dress that could have been worn by the film’s protagonist, along with long opera gloves and jewelled hair clips in side partings. Totally beautiful.
Full of the rich, quirky colour combinations that Roksanda is so well known for, this collection had touches of Victorian prim and properness but was wholly luxurious, too. The shades of teal, terracotta, navy and claret were set off beautifully in silk, velvet and suede. There was a focus on high collars, many with black flowing ribbons tied around; I particularly liked the double ruffle collars, reminiscent of a Tudor ruff but WAY more comfortable. Roksanda’s frocks are favourites on the red carpet but there were some more casual workwear-friendly separates too, like calf-length skirts and slim-fit sweaters.
I like a show that makes you smile, and that tends to happen when the first outfit in a collection is a leather jacket that looks like it’s made from corrugated cardboard and the model is wearing a plastic bag as a head scarf. A bit like that one your gran wears in the rain. OK, that sounds mad, but fast forward to the rest of the show and you’ll discover a host of straight-to-the-top-of-the-shopping-list coats, pretty English country garden-inspired floral prints and delicate feathered trainers to die for. As well as ticking many of next season’s emerging trends - wearing jewellery on your clothes, big pants under transparent dresses, heavily embellished flat shoes - Kane always manages to retain a style that is completely unique.
It’s quite an achievement to design a collection that feels both ultra modern and ancient at the same time, but that’s exactly what design duo Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos did when they used Nordic symbolism as the starting point for autumn/winter 2016. Pastel shades of peach, blue and lilac sat alongside neutral navy, grey and camel backgrounds, making them feel anything but saccharine as pale colours often do. I loved the sunset symbols, astrology and graphic arrows on everything from slinky evening dresses to chunky knitwear. An unusual collection, but a really gorgeous one.