And that is it, another season over, as the city of London reshuffles back into its usual chaos, as we see fashion week head over to Paris and then Milan. With so much to recap on from the past weekend, it is no wonder ever season seems to pass by in a blur. We have had Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo as Ralph & Russo debut their first ready-to-wear collection for spring/summer 18 and are spear heading towards the luxury lifestyle brand that we will all want to invest in. J.W. Anderson, Simone Rosha and many more designers all blew the crowds away with star-studded collections that brought bridal-white to the forefront, baby blue hues through the accessory colour story and exaggerated lengths and silhouettes as the shape for the next season. Topshop reignited the 80’s club disco with embellishment, glitter and metallic hues whilst Burberry with the stunning face of Adowa Aboah leading the pack who brought back the classic Burberry check in every clothing garment possible for SS18.
However, with the incredible growth and talent of young designers that stream through London each year, the new talents are who are catching our eye over at House of Solo. The incredible duo that are Saini Chan and Sophie Chan, behind the luxury mens and womenswear collection Lunyee, captivated this season with deconstructed silhouettes, punk metal inspired detail and enough silk to make you want to convert any wool and polyester you own to the desired material that span throughout their collection. The approach was simple, the production stripped back to when catwalks were all about the clothes before the fashion show overhaul, and the sophistication came through in their designs and impeccable tailoring. John Herrera known for his evening and special occasion wear, took his collection back to the height of the Victorian period, clearly inspired within his collection, hair styles were mounted with hairspray and tied together with fishnet that covered a purposeful white-washed model’s face and skilfully met with exaggerated shapes. Not only is London Fashion Week emerging with new designers but the innovation of presenting the collections has taken a turn for the new, shall we say. Less and less designers are carrying their vision through catwalk shows, as the need for clothes to be obtainable and reachable, means that presentations are the preferred approach.
Judy Wu’s presentation took place in the basement of a pop up shop in the heart of Soho, the laboratory setting was in essence provoking and concentrated, with a single model sat in the centre of the room whilst women worked around her, constructing a garment with only a needle and thread, it certainly appears that shows are becoming that bit more exciting and engaging. Take the Steven Tai and Edeline Lee presentations at The Strand. Edeline Lee’s body of work was a tailored construction of feminine advancement, with clear inspiration from both the 1920’s and 1950’s in terms of style and construction. Edeline quotes “In this collection I wanted to connect to the vulnerability and the strength at the core of every woman”, and her collection exceeded the expectation. With whites, baby blues, nudes and a plum palette running through the colour story, each piece resonated with her message as well as her focus of twisting ties and knots that purposefully exaggerated the feminine silhouette.
Another astounding presentation was Steven Tai’s SS18 collection, meeting with the hair and make-up artists behind the looks backstage, they explained the inspiration behind the sandy summer beach, which was Tai’s vision for next season. The head hair stylist expressed the individualised hair look for each girl, from the natural wistful styling to the beach-wave, the hair styling had to reflect the ‘populous Italian shorelines’. Going for a beauty dry vibe, soft waves on some girls and then natural on others, it was important for the collection that each girl was catered to individually, but holding the vision in place they used Aveda’s ‘Texture Tonic’ to complete each look. The beauty element had a similar focus, with Steven Tai himself pushing each collection with the expression of the young carefree girl at different stages of the day, it was important the make up reflected this. It was all about the fresh skin and natural face, with nothing on the eyes, adding fake freckles across the face and a glossy red-stained lip – an immediate image of the innocent school girl blushing as her crush walks by – the models transformed into schoolgirls by the beach on a hot summer’s day. The presentation itself brought the vision together, palm trees, sea landscapes and sand dunes surrounding the girls as they playfully took snaps of one another and beckoned in the crowd.
Another season down and many more to go with the innovation of presentations just beginning to evolve.