Vivienne Westwood Red Label
Are you tired yet? Fuel up on coffee like me and keep reading!
Believe you me, there is no way that the 70s trend is over for SS 2016. If anything it’s going stronger than ever. This show definitely had the wow factor, with metallics and glitter playing a huge part; the cosmos in motion. The first selection of dresses showcased the trademark stunning craftsmanship of the brand, and its evolution from those instantly recognisable prints to something much more intricate and complex. Paired with ribbed metallic peep toe tights in a variety of colours, these dresses definitely fall into the category of wearable art, with the central design reminiscent of traditional Balkan dress. Then came some metallic shift dresses/top and skirt combos that wouldn’t have looked out of place at Studio 54 or YSL’s Paris of the 70s paired with snakeskin heels and killer ankle boots. Then we were treated to some detailed floral panel work of the highest order, some with longer side panels which were a real point of difference. The floral ankle boots were just sublime. Some quilted ruffled pieces in burgundy and turquoise signalled diversity from the profuse detail of the rest of the collection. The ruffles still played a part in more sedate pieces later with only partial floral detail set against darker and simpler tunics, trousers and skirts. Then we got some more showstopping metallic pieces towards the end before finishing (slightly oddly) on black dress coats/waistcoats with cropped trousers (key trend). It was nice to see the 90s neck choker back in force as well.
Based on the fact that only recently Dame Viv decided to drive a tank to David Cameron’s house to protest about fracking, the show was never going to be just about the clothes. Models wore PoliticansRCriminals badges on many of the looks, and fittingly the invitation didn’t even mention the clothes once, such was the emphasis on protest against what is going on politically and environmentally in the UK and globally. As difficult as it is, let’s get back to the clothes. Many pieces weren’t that much of a huge departure from prior seasons, with the classic draped dresses out in force and classic tailoring on jackets and skirts. My eye went immediately to the fun accessories – ice lolly necklaces and earrings, perspex belts around the throat alongside Save the Arctic badges. Models had black paint smudged across their eyes to add to the sense of protest. The footprint t-shirts were standout, alongside classic Westwood off the shoulder dresses in linen. Prints were clashed, with bright florals against an elaborate Versailles style black, grey and white. There was also a historical nod with medieval style belts across the chest. Metallic tartan also featured on some pieces, proving that the trend is here to stay (at least for another season anyway). People are going to covet the tapestry coats, and I especially liked the colourful mules. Of course there had to be a protest, and the finale involved Dame Viv and models sporting oversized colourful crowns stomping around the room.
Next Spring/Summer prepare to get your stripes out. From the outset Mr Saunders gave us fringing and laser cut curved lines on white cotton set against the brightest red. There were the tiniest stripes set against wide stripes for contrast, then came tops incorporating belts tied at the side and flowing to the ground. There was a flurry of flowing (you guessed it, striped) bias cut slip dresses, harlequin prints and dress coats/tops split open just below the neck. I enjoyed the baroque print clashes featuring some eye-popping neon yellow, and more of the neck tie/belt recurring theme. Then came some beautiful mosque-esque (almost like tiling) prints and some gorgeous metallic pieces that the colour just bounced off. The striped dresses clashing all of the themes and prints were a natural progression. The finale involved polka dots (cut out and embellished) on flowing dresses and shirts with cuffs ending way past the wrists and those ever present ribbon ties. Get ready to belt up and go with the flow.
Preen by Thornton Bragazzi
Why can’t it be spring yet? This collection made me want to bypass Autumn/Winter completely and lol around in dreamy, pretty cut out florals (with my toned Methodology X body on show)! It was all about lace and ruffles, with pieces held together with circular rings, showing off the body burin no way exploitative. I loved the floral print overlapped with black and white embroidered shapes, soft and harsh working together harmoniously. The footwear was fairly masculine – classic and pointed cut out brogues set against all that femininity. The metallic ruffled dress was a standout piece (metallic – key trend). Some animal print also sneaked its way in as well, as well as gingham. Then at the end stripes showed up overlaid with sheer gold floral lame, it was certainly not samey in the slightest. We’re all going to be showing off our shoulders next season now.
Tomorrow sees Roksanda, Burberry, Erdem, Peter Pilotto and GILES. Watch this space.