Monday, 17 September 2012

Matthew Williamson S/S '13

If there was ever a collection that summed up the ever-revolving cycle of fashion, it was the one shown by Matthew Williamson at London Fashion Week, as he celebrated 15 successful years at the helm of his own-name label.

 Williamson aim was to make a synopsis of “the DNA of the brand”- peacock bright colour ways and daring, red carpet ready evening gowns being eponymous with the label- and perform a thorough re-evaluation for the modern customer.

The traditional Williamson clashing hot ‘n’ cold colour palette was reimagined onto thoroughly modern silhouettes, proving that the designer has a lot more depth than singularly providing red carpet magic.

Blazing trails of peacock brights blistered and collided in a stream of white light on of-the-moment silken shirts and short suits. Ankle grazing tailored trousers and lust-worthy knits added to the wearable aspects of Williamson’s S/S ’13 collection; no longer will these designs simply clothe the pages of the glossies, but the backs of their exacting editors as well.

Kaleidoscope prints adorned more trousers, dresses and jackets; the design was abstracted using embellishment and laser cut-outs, indicating Williamson’s progress and experimentation over the years. Finally, flowing, bias-cut dresses in shades from aquamarine and cobalt to the fieriest of sunset orange/pink gave the designer his grand, A-list ending.

This was a style revision that followed in the footsteps of Galliano for Dior: Williamson chose a few precise elements of his brand’s makeup, selecting only those details which were both eponymous to the label’s image and which could easily translate into covetable modern designs, as John Galliano accomplished with the iconic New Look silhouette at Dior. We can only hope that Raf Simons will also perform such a successful transition in his first ever ready-to-wear collection for the label at Paris Fashion Week; he would do well to take some advice from Williamson on that one. 

All photos:

Friday, 14 September 2012

Bora Aksu Spring/ Summer '13


There’s a reason why Bora Aksu is one of the most watched designers emerging from London today. Adhering strictly to Louise Wilson’s, the fearsome head of the MA programme at Central St Martins, from which Aksu graduated in 2002, central mantra against derivativeness, this season the Turkish designer has produced yet another starkly original collection to add to his impressive legacy.

        Describing his work as ‘demi-couture’, for Spring/ Summer 13 Aksu has produced a collection which focuses upon the point at which sweet romanticism collides with a darker edge; he calls upon Queen Marie of Romania, the grand-daughter of Queen Victoria, to be his central muse. Torn from her British roots by her marriage to Ferdinand of Romania, Queen Maria embraced Romanian culture and traditions whilst still maintaining her quintessential Englishness. This can be witnessed literally through Aksu’s frequent depiction of traditionally shaped, gauzy puffed sleeves and heavier dirndl skirts in the collection, and more metaphorically with his melding of fabric and prints.

       The layering of tulle over cotton and silk embossed with abstract prints give an ephemeral, trompe l’oeil effect to the garments, speaking of a life full of uncertainties and layered with different experiences.  In fact, the meaning of the repeated print flows with the bias cut fabrics; occasionally floral, sometimes almost artery-like as it curves with the models’ bodies, it ties a sense of displacement in with a distinct celebration of the ornate and beautiful.

     Apart from the inspiration aspect of this collection, Aksu additionally displays an innovative approach to cut, utilising the build-up of the aforementioned separate layers to combine into translucent silken waterfalls of dresses, ideal for summer wafting. Furthermore, inserts of ruched chiffon brought low-key dynamism and shaping to some dresses, whereas shots of embroidered collars, lapels, belts and the occasional knitted vest grounded others sections of the collection.

     The last thing to mention is, of course, the crocheted crowns worn by each model that strutted down the catwalk. Made by Aksu to compliment the inspiration behind the Spring/ Summer ’13 collection, they were the perfect, unique accessorised the romantic but yet slightly gothic feel to the clothes on display. As always, Bora Aksu is anything but derivative. 

All photos:

Monday, 10 September 2012

Trend Forecast S/S 2013: NYFW

White Out


{Clockwise from top left: Theyskens Theory; DKNY; Alexander Wang; Carolina Herrera; Altuzarra; Victoria Beckham} 

Contrasting Collars
{Clockwise from top left: Alexander Wang; Peter Som; Thakoon; Victoria Beckham; Carolina Herrera}

Striking Silhouettes
                                                  {Clockwise from top left: Theyskens Theory; Monique Lhuillier; 
                                                             Victoria Beckham; Monique Lhuillier; Lacoste}

{Clockwise from top left: 3.1 Phillip Lim; Diane von Furstenberg; Victoria Beckham; Alexander Wang; Monique Lhuillier; Jason Wu; DKNY}

Sexy Sophistication

{Clockwise from top left: Monique Lhuillier; Zac Posen; BCBG Max Azaria; Peter Som; Altuzarra}

Leather Obsession

{Clockwise from top left: Monique Lhuillier; Jason Wu; Theyskens Theory; Jason Wu; Alexander Wang; 3.1 Phillip Lim}

All photos from

Friday, 7 September 2012

1-2-3-4 Festival

For my first post in a long, long time I decided to attempt something I've never tried before: street style snapping. The perfect opportunity presented itself at last weekend's 1-2-3-4 festival in the hipster- paradise that is Shoreditch. You just couldn't move in the festival for bloggers taking pictures of each other in a self -propelling cycle of brothel- creepers, denim shirts and studded leather jackets. 

Silvia Olsen (no, not a relation, although I did ask...). What especially drew me to her outfit were her play on proportions and textures, with her chiffon-y midi skirt paired with an oversized parka and chunky knit. Although a tricky look to pull off, the simple block colours and flash of skin at ankle and wrist ensure that the outfit didn't swamp her petite frame.

Amanda Lawrence. I was drawn to her dip-dyed hair and flash of red lippie from across the field- a simple yet striking look that is an easy solution to looking stylish on an everyday basis. 

I adored meeting Miss Vienna Green, a burlesque performer and fire eater (!!!) from London. She was glamour and sophistication personified, with everything from her fab shoes to her immaculate nail polish either sourced or inspired by the 1930s or 40s. I'll always regret not taking a picture of the back of her vintage dress, which was cut low into the small of her back and finished with a sultry scarlet bow. 

Lastly, I really liked Louise Donovan's Courtney Love-inspired grunge outfit...mainly because I recognised her playsuit from on I tried on in Beyond Retro a few months ago! I love the simple grey tee, too.