Outlandish, energetic, a melting pot of creativity, diverse, innovative, breath-taking and exquisite – London is the best place for fashion in the world.
It’s an experimental playground where style meets trends and the result is simply mind-blowing. Everyone’s favourite fashionista, Alexa Chung has said: “Compared to the strictness in New York, London seems freer from commercial constraints. Truer to the process, to street style, to a sense of humour.” London is the city where designers don’t do fashion, they are the Fashion.
This September, London Fashion Week nailed it. Oh yes, it did! The Spring/Summer 2017 collections were a privilege characterized by an explosion of colours (Charlotte Olympia & Sophia Webster), a unique raw quirkiness (Ashish), pastel linen (Peter Pilotto) and languid silhouettes (Roksanda).
Compiled is an alphabetical-order-only list of London Fashion Week’s SS17 highlights:
In the aftermath of the Brexit, the London-established Indian designer Ashish Gupta wanted to celebrate the: “Indian culture as an integral part of the British one”. Gupta dared to challenge the classical dogmas of modelling by adding mixed-race models or painted yellow/brightly-coloured models as a political support statement for immigration in this SS17 collection.
Gupta’s collection debuted with the words Love & Devotion (perhaps Gupta’s love and devotion for Britain?) and ended with the word Immigrant, critiquing the uplift in racial crimes since the Brexit. Gupta’s collection is Indian folk/Bollywood inspired. The designer combines urban sportswear with pieces of the Indian garb, such as the churidars and the salwars. Gupta covers them all in a superb sequin work and a complex embroidery.
Inspired by ’40s glamour (shoulder length curled hair, trim waist and hips, inset sleeves, knee-length, flared skirts, large animal skin bags, colourful and bright attires), the collection seemed fresh from a vintage poster. Dellal bases it: “on Technicolor movies from the ’40s, like Carmen Miranda’s, which she’d always loved”. The elegant cream outfits accessorized with gilded platforms are drawn on the ’40s glamour, while the exotic fruit costumes and the dancers with inflatable bananas are reminiscent of Carmen Miranda’s explosion of colourfulness.
Austrian-Italian Pilotto and the Peruvian-Belgian De Vos make use of pastel coloured linen, abstract flower prints and jewelled patches for their SS17 collection.
Roksanda Ilincic is known for her colour-blocking designs. This SS17 collection, described by her as: “a song to summer”, abounds in sensuality, defined by languid silhouettes, flowy tunics, flowery motifs and satin sweaters and silk dresses. This season, the dresses loosened up substantially and took the form of an enlarged t-shirt, giving a note of elegance and diaphaneity to Ilincic’s collection.
”The Dolly Birds Of Paradise” SS17 collection found inspiration in: “Gwen Stefani’s timeless and consistent style, birds of paradise, mixed with some Sixties chunky heels and detailing”, the designer clarifies. Other famous muses include Frieda Kahlo, Barbie and Beyoncé. The designer’s “dream girl’s shoes” are a pair of chunky coral sparkly platforms and a pair of sandals with musical notes woven on to them. Definitely something that Stefani would wear. The venue is itself a swinging and vibrant tropical paradise – decorated with huge birdcages hanging from the walls and birds’ nests in arches.
#LondonIsOpen to new ideas, celebrations of different cultures and fashion obviously. One could never be tired of London.