I have to admit, immediately that London Fashion Week is always by far my favourite of all the fashion weeks, if you've been following us for some time then that's something you're sure to know already. That said, it was with great anticipation I awaited the catwalks of London this season, unfortunately, and I'm really sad to admit this, I was mostly underwhelmed.
There were some favourites though, not to be a complete negative Nancy. The tailoring at Burberry Prorsum was impeccable, as per usual, and the military inspiration that was evident in New York was here too, but far more luxurious than we saw in the Marc by Marc Jacobs collection for example. Luxe leather aviator jackets, army style blazers and Navy peacoats with interesting details such as the one pictured above, far left, were all marched down the runway with the navy looks and chic thigh high boots were my favourite.
Over at Unique (a Topshop line) the looks were more woodland hermit than smart utility, with wonderful avant-garde styling from Katie Grand, and amazing animal masks/headwear by Emma Cook (I used to have this odd drunkenly purchased cat head hat when I was a student..I'm somewhat wishing I knew where it was – lol – it was fantastic) the whole feel was cozy, eclectic and quite fascinating to look at. I particularly loved the 'badger' looks with the long sherpa lined coat, the little military/scout uniform pictured above (third from left) and the chunky long socks. It was also refreshing to see fake fur on the runway. "SEE?" she say pointedly at all the other designers….
Mulberry had a really fun collection, and definitely brought some of the playfulness that I had loved so much in the New York collections. Great splashes of colour in jewel tones and other vibrant hues, plus some interesting animal prints and amazing footwear… completely lusting over the shoes…dream dream dream. Again it was this cute separates look we saw (and I loved) in New York, combined with long drapey cardigans. Loveliness (pictured far right above)
Embellishment was huge this season. At Clements Ribeiro we saw beaded and sequin appliques (pictured above second to the right) on cardigans and dresses and even the shoes…I'm tempted to try this one out myself….another DIY in our future?
But the best by far in terms of embellishment and probably my favourite from this seasons London collections was Christopher Kane. The crewel embroidery on his garments was insanely exquisite, I'm an avid fan of vintage crewels, usually framed and hanging somewhere, but to see it displayed on garments such as these was just brilliant. I adored the juxtaposition between the pretty embroidery and lace and the more severe palette (i.e black) and tough leather and structure. A really fabulous collection.
Graphic, almost photo realistic prints were featured on a lot of runways including Basso & Brooke and Erdem (who also featured embroidery)… interesting but almost a little assaulting to the eye. Paul Smith presented a fascinating womens collection, it was so eclectic that it was almost uncohesive but then you remembered it was Paul Smith and that was exactly what made it cohesive, inspired by…everywhere! Particularly standout to me was a Scottish inspiration from the tweed to the sashes on pretty dresses as well as a smidgen of fifties Americana in the shapes and fabrics.
Ok… lets see what the other ladies thought.
Basso & Brooke’s collection (above – far left) reminded me so much of the
dear late Alexander McQueen. Full of interesting patterns that evoked images of
wildlife, the collection was lush and full of texture. I loved the shorter
dresses paired with the chic coats, but they lost me with tunics and pants in
the same pattern – a little too matchy-matchy for me. Fur was big again, as
were geometric prints and I even spotted another one-armed dress!
Burberry’s look (second from the left) was a little grungier than usual, sporting a
lot of dried herb and thigh-high boots, along with the illusion of shredding in
the form of ruffles. Of course their coats were completely fabulous, as usual.
Military inspired, they were big, swingy and had wonderfully oversized buttons.
Also in were buckles, snake prints and once again, fur! (Is it just me or is
anyone else getting a little tired of fur in every Fall/Winter 2010 show?) Muted
colors were a mainstay but towards the end of the show some beautiful pinks and
magentas appeared which was very refreshing.
Paul Smith’s show (third left) was all over the place – graphic tees made
an appearance, as well as oversized knitted items, but he really shined with the
big, full A-lined skirts paired with fishnets and cropped jackets, which is a
beautiful silhouette on almost every woman. His cocktail dresses were in for me
too; they all had interesting, unique proportions and were beautifully draped.
I was not a fan, however, of the transparent plasticky looking fabrics he used
towards the end of his show.
Pringle of Scotland (far right) had a more relaxed vibe, with big, chunky
knits making their presence known as well as wide-legged trousers. The show was
very minimalist as far as accessories and color go. Neutrals and blacks ran the
runway, with a few dashes of mustard thrown in. I was not impressed by the
orange eyeshadow (looked like pinkeye) or the dark roots on models – I hope
that doesn’t make a comeback!
Pictured Above: Paul Smith Women, Matthew Williamson, Kinder Aggugini, and Jaeger London
simply Europeans in general) really know how to do fashion. No matter
how extreme or understated the design, there is just something exciting
and special about fashion in London.
With good reason, the collections instantly drew me in to
outerwear, outerwear, and more outerwear. Can you tell I love
outerwear? Give me a Burberry trench, and I could be happy for a good
long while. But we will get back to Burberry momentarily.
For starters, Paul Smith Women, Matthew Williamson, Kinder
Aggugini, and Jaeger London all presented unique outerwear items for
next fall. With pretty tailoring, Paul Smith’s entire collection had a
very ladylike point of view, which made for a very beautiful coat or
cape. Matthew Williamson showed a bright pink coat that looked a bit
‘Legally Blonde,’ but it definitely captured attention on the catwalk.
Kinder Aggugini’s edgy, almost-Goth collection even revealed a few
classic outerwear pieces, including a striking beige cape. Jaeger
London played with a lovely plaid material and menswear shapes to
create a hip coat for this coming fall season.
Of course, no coverage of London
Fashion Week would be complete without mentioning Burberry Prorsum.
Maybe it was being able to watch the actual streaming of the show,
delivering the signature Burberry shapes of sophistication, or a little
bit of both, but this brand had fashion lovers going wild. Including a
mixture of army colors and the occasional pop of bright colors to keep
things interesting, Burberry delivered a military and aviator-inspired
grouping of jackets, trenches, and coats. Plus, this brand showed how
to wear sleek, over-the-knee boots beautifully. Experience this
collection for yourself in photos or video footage.
Thank you London!
By Sarah Corley
P.S. WILL WORK FOR BURBERRY!
Top left-right: Mark Fast, Basso & Brooke, Clements Ribeiro, Basso
& Brooke, Mark Fast. Bottom left-right: Clements Ribeiro, Clements
Ribeiro, Mark Fast, Mark Fast, Basso & Brooke.
London Fashion Week SS10 saw knitwear designer Mark Fast, use plus size
models and lose half of his team because they did not approve. That
still didn’t stop him using plus size models during AW1011, using
twenty-three year old Crystal Renn for his show. Mark Fast commented,
“Modelling should be about personality and variety. It is about
beautiful women. Size should not come into the equation”. Thank you, Mr
Fast. Though I agree that some clothes look better on thinner models,
some of them certainly look a whole lot better on larger women too, so
why should they be shunned? Anyway! His collection was as beautiful as
ever, I feel. A colour palette of rich, strong colours as well as
neutral shades, complimented one another, and his collection remained
as figure hugging as ever.
Basso and Brooke caught my eye again this season. Even though
silhouettes were very classic and plain, the prints used on their
pieces are incredibly colourful and creative and very, very beautiful.
Ribeiro was another favorite of mine this season. Their collection
“Haute Bohemia” definitely resembles part of my personal style so I
admired most of the collection, particularly the cute dresses and
cardigans embellished with crystal detailing.
Apart from these few designers, I was mostly unimpressed by a lot of
the collections. Nothing really stood out to me, as it usually does. I
admired more, the street style at LFW this season, than anything else.
I loved the Unique collection, mostly for its unusual styling and set.
I adored everything about each look that Unique present. Their
outerwear was to die for and I’d happily own every piece of that
collection if I could. The one thing I loved most about this collection, was how truly British it felt. It’s how I wish everyone
would dress in the Autumn and Winter months.
Editors Note: I find it fascinating that we were all drawn to the same collections, yet had varying opinions on them…I'm not sure what that means in terms of this blog, but I hope you have found each of our round-ups as interesting as I have! All photos via style.com. Kelsi Smith.