It’s fair to say that London’s Spring Fashion Week was great. One thing’s for sure, London, as the first of four global fashion weeks, gave the industry a solid kickstart showcasing authenticity, the power of youthfulness and raised questions about fashion’s state of sustainability.
From crème de la crème of mainstays like Burberry, Victoria Beckham, Erdem or Christopher Kane, the audience could also admire the freshness of newcomers such as Petar Petrov, Molly Goddard as well as talents from the Central Saint Martins MA show. London Fashion Week takes place twice a year, in February and September, bringing together the most prestigious fashion designers, international influencers, and retailers.
The British Fashion Council spread awareness about ethics by launching The Positive Fashion Exhibition, “to discover new brands and immersive experiences that explore the most compelling stories around sustainability, craftsmanship and ethics, as we invite designers, innovators and progressive businesses to tell their story and demonstrate how things are made, educating and inspiring audiences on the positive changes within the industry.”
It is hard to grasp the fluctuating levels of creativity that London represents, yet British designers know how to stick in the audience’s mind by establishing new trends. Two designers looked for inspiration entirely from the past: Erdem, who celebrated the beauty of the early 20th century and Simone Rocha, who paid tribute to Ireland’s coastal communities.
For Erdem, an arbiter of merging the glamour of the past with the pulse of our present, the beginning of a new decade seemed an appropriate moment to modernise references to the past: Inspired by Cecil Beaton’s Bright Young Things exhibition from the 1920’s, the show displayed silver dresses shimmering over silken patterns, feathered headgear proudly adorning models’ heads and timeless narrow trousers leaving a sense of elegance. Amid the abundance of embellished headpieces, one humble detail stood out the most – a bobby pin, securing almost every hairstyle on the runway, complimenting silver-foil lids of models.
Simone Rocha’s show glowed sheer poetry with her saying – “sea salt eyes, ribbons and ties, fishermen’s nets catching pearls” painted a feminine, nostalgic portrait of childhood, entangled in white lace veils and tulle, black coats with stitching and dramatic layers.
Burberry made a fierce appearance during the week as modernist designer Riccardo Tisci presented his third Burberry collection, which paid tribute to the Victorian era. Standouts included a new twist on the classic trench coats and checkered patterns, with a lot of sparkle towards the finale. A point worth mentioning is that the collection used only faux fur which is a huge step towards sustainability following the 2018 scandal whereby Burberry was shown to burn all unsold merchandise, from clothes, perfume and accessories. The show hosted plenty of celebrity models including Bella and Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Irina Shayk and Joan Smalls.
For Christopher Kane, the use of geometric shapes resembled a scene from the Garden of Eden. The designer discovered that the “triangle is the most powerful, strong shape in nature” on which he built a strong collection of patchwork dresses, coats, with triangled-shaped lacy lingerie.
Never have up-cycled tea towels, blankets, ribbons and beer mats ever looked so good! Adam Jones is a British designer whose label creates unisex clothing which is easy to wear, bold and inventive. Adam’s work has even been photographed by Marrio Sorrenti, known for his work in Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.
A self-taught designer whose brand offers stunning jewellery inspired by nature. Anita’s jewellery is made from recycled materials and has already been recognised by Vogue, Elle, Vanity Fair and Forbes to name but a few. Her delicate yet striking jewellery is ready to wear and stocked by Net-A-Porter.
Stay Wild Swim
The ultimate sustainable swimwear brand; their products are created from regenerated ocean plastic, proving that fashion can be kind to the environment whilst looking incredible. This brand should also be noted for its message of body positivity. Stay Wild Swim has been stocked in Selfridges in the ‘Bright New things 2019/20’ curated edit.
Championing the movement towards a zero-waste fashion industry, Ssōne uses offcuts and vintage fabrics to bring stunning designs to life. This elegant womenswear brand, only two-years-old, is already causing a stir in the fashion scene and is a brand to watch.
This season, Joao Maraschin launched his brand which has attention to detail and waste consideration at the core of its designs. Maraschin supports handmade production techniques such as crochet and as a result, creates high-quality pieces which have the environment in mind.
Focused on smart design, and founded by former UN climate negotiator Laura Hanning, Faldan creates luxury foldable bags. Faldan’s aim is to reduce the use of plastic bags and designs bags which can be used in any situation. Their bags are created with sustainable materials that are durable and light to fulfil the ultimate bag-on-the-go necessities. Among other materials, these bags are made from recycled coffee cups.