LFW | Autumn Winter 17 | Day 4
| Erdem |
PIECING together the references is all part of the charm at Erdem. The colours alone signalled a return to the east: burnished yellows, rich blues, pretty purples, all shown to their best effect in light printed jersey velvet (incidentally, velvet's not going anywhere for Autumn). Then came a series of beautiful fluted shapes printed with those Ottoman manuscript patterns, little cut-outs at the neck with a string of neat Edwardian buttons. There was also a trio of standout coats - a beautifully hand-worked camel cape, a gorgeous golden flocked coat, a chestnut brown fur specked with crystal wildflowers, all given their turn to shine by pairing them with the starched white governess dresses that feel so intrinsically Erdem. But the dresses, as ever, were the stars.
| Sophia Webster |
Sophia Webster knows how to create an escape. For AW17, Webster transformed the basement of Soho record shop Phonica into an ice-cold winter wonderland. Staying true to her playful, tongue-in-cheek aesthetic, we were transported to a snow-covered scape with larger-than-life snow globes, where her models reigned on thrones of ice. With glittering pastels, icy whites and blues running through the collection, there were speech bubble clutch bags reading ‘Melt Me’, ‘Ice, Ice, Baby’ and ‘Cooler than Cool’, regal headpieces straight from Narnia, and snowboots ready for the Arctic. Then there were the show-stoppers: the Ice Queen thigh-high boots which combined Sophia’s signature jewel- and gem-adorned footwear with armour-like chain mail and silver, iridescent over-the-knee boots, emblazoned with ‘Hot Like Fire’ and ‘Cold Like Ice’ in flashing LED lights.
| Huishan Zhang |
Romance was in the air at Huishan Zhang’s fall show. They featured gathered sleeves and flared skirts, so light they didn’t make a sound as the models glided softly to the sounds of an acoustic guitar. The motif served as a matrix for intricate feather and pearl embroideries, as seen on a cropped teddy jacket and two-piece evening ensemble made of a midlength skirt and cropped top, feeding somewhat into the season’s boudoir chic vibe. Albeit romantic by nature, they were no match with Zhang’s lace and tulle artistry.
| Christopher Kane |
Combining traditional fabrics with futuristic silhouettes within Christopher Kane’s collection. Noting that he wanted to express a “tougher femininity,” the designer looked to the practical uniform that a female factory worker might wear, resulting in some no-frills, mannish shapes. Here was an oversized wool coat, with a row of what the designer called “OCD pockets” on the sleeves, while there was a wide-shouldered gray trench, striped with bands of iridescent foil.
| Ashish |
Designer Ashish Gupta is no stranger to rainbow sequins, but this season, they took on a whole new meaning. The Ashish show was a London Fashion Week moment that'll go down in history, as models strutted down the catwalk in Americana-inspired styles like sports jerseys and letterman jackets emblazoned with politically charged slogans aimed squarely at Donald Trump. Feminist phrases like "Nasty Woman" and "Pussy Grabs Back" jostled for space amongst pointed comments embroidered on sequined sportswear: a Major League Baseball New York Yankees baseball jersey played host to the phrase "Unity in Adversity," while "Unfinished Business" sparkled its way down the sleeves of one red, white, and blue USA jacket. There were also gay pride slogans ("Why be blue when you can be gay?") and reminders to "stay woke." To finish, a positive call to arms, reminding us to be kind, to know our self-worth, and to love wholly and unconditionally. After all, in the designer's own words, "you are much lovelier than you think!"