There’s no better way to start London Fashion Week than with the amazing news that all designers part of the official catwalk and presentation were going fur-free. Good news were in order also regarding the weather. Considering that London is a bit chillier than the other fashion capitals in Europe, I was actually surprised to have sunny days and true summer evenings during my stay there—that certainly gave me lots of energy to run from one show to the other and see the newest collections of the legendary designers. Another big part of my schedule was meeting emerging designers and I was happy to see that they are really focused on making a statement through their collections in wanting to leave a mark on the industry. Promoting emerging designers is one of the most fulfilling activities I get to do in fashion. Being the vice president of Feeric Fashion Week, a platform for new talent to showcase their collections, I created my daily outfits during LFW using their items. Now, let me take you on my Londonaise fashion journey.
The first show I got to attend was Bora Aksu. With his vibrant floral prints and soft silk tulles, Aksu introduced contemporary details based on embroidered cut-out lace patterns and exposed shoulders.
And since we’re talking about silk, lest we forget Johnstons of Elgin‘s collection. The main focus for this latest collection was to showcase cutting-edge lightweight textiles and knit innovations in cashmere silk and cotton, thus illustrating the year-round versatility of cashmere.
Another collection that especially caught my eye was Eudon Choi’s Manik Baugh, inspired by artist Ivan Da Silva Bruhns. Choi incorporated playful silhouettes and a balance of minimal adornment and utility. Later that day, it was Gareth Pugh‘s turn to show his collection, which he describes as a celebration of “outsider society.” With a stark, battery acid palette, it was an explosion of print and colour; a clear opposition to conservatism. The magic touch was also given by the opening tune for the show. “Why can’t we give ourselves one more chance,” Freddie Mercury’s words in Queen’s anthemic Under Pressure resonated in the room, going hand in hand with Pugh’s creative output—and certainly making me hum all through the evening.
Julien Macdonald was all about showing off some skin combining feminine drapes with glittering fabrics that reflected his signature glossy style. I was mesmerized by St. John’s Church in Hyde Park, the location where the show took place, and lost myself in the details I had around me before beauties like Winnie Harlow and Izabel Goulart started to stroll in front of my eyes in sparkly dresses.
Nicholas Kirkwood kicked off Sunday with a show that focused on the tension between digital and organic elements, highlighting the harmony and disharmony of different materials. He filled the stage with a collection that offers sculptural and feminine stand-out pieces in a setting that can be considered non-traditional and unexpected, further enhanced by a performance that threw the guest into a world of chaos and frenetic energy. Fast-forward to Tuesday, when Natasha Zinko’s awed us with a collection that drew inspiration from real versus fake battle, in which she used the print from asphalt and other real elements that surround us in the urban life.
I ended my LFW that same day with Roberta Einer’s show, one that tapped into her obsession with ’70s Moroccan culture by translating it into easy, loose and lightweight layers with maximalist embellishments. There are, of course, other designers I had the pleasure of watching during LFW. Fashion Scout presented the three winners of The Ones To Watch Award for London Fashion Week SS19: AuCarre, Nous Etudions and Price on Request.
Independent and aware of today’s wants and needs, Price on Request create clothes that speak to courageous and bold individuals with a strong sense of self. On the other hand, AuCarre is a brand that emphasizes feminine power by elevating and giving voice to all women. As new designers, they are very much intrigued by making up their own stories and creating contemporary characters using pioneering fabrication, contemporary aesthetic and luxury elements. Nous Etudions is linked to sustainability, veganism and gender non-conforming traditions. The reformulation of traditional tailoring, the use of monochrome whilst defining the colour palette, the oversized predominant silhouettes and the experimentation of handmade textiles are some of the elements that define the philosophy of Nous Etudions and their minimalist character. A philosophy I am also into and I will follow closely as I’m curious to see where they will go with their next collection.
London being one of the most cosmopolitan and vibrant capitals, London Fashion Week proved once again that its creativity in fashion is unmatched and I had a wonderful time being part of the phenomenon. I snatched plenty of energy from everything around: the people I met, the collections I saw, the never-ending inspiration found in small details throughout the city buildings and, ultimately, the city’s very own vibe. These were a great four days that prepared me for everything Milan and Paris had in store.