London Fashion Week: Day two offers a funky fashion restoration
London rocked on Friday morning with a blend of acclaimed historicism and funky, unexpected street wear. There were practically no actual shows in the UK capital yet plenty of ideas in a handful of memorable video displays. Clothes for next summer, when fashion designers want their customers to rage freely.
A windy quarry, with a score of Asian gals strolling hair astray on a wild ridge. All looking like they had been out all night partying. One long fabulous final drone shot capturing the whole scene, as a juggernaut truck swings around the ridge where the models stand in formation. Voluminous asymmetrical blouses; waxed patent leather cocktails; darling deconstructed trousers – in one of the most inventively cut collections in ages. A unisex ready-to-wear brand from Beijing, founded by Wang Wei and Tim Shi, Marrknull is all about recomposing Chinese traditional clothing with a certain sort of deconstructed bedraggled grace.
Inspired by Chinese 1980s movie In the Wild Mountains directed by Yan Xueshu, a tale of two women fighting for their lives during the convulsions of rural reform in China, this was brilliantly succinct vision of edgy nobility.
Savile Row met Restoration punks in a kicky and great agit-prop statement from the reigning queen of British fashion Vivienne Westwood.
Unisex to the max with magnificent windowpane check looks – dandy double breasted for the guys and saucy coat dresses for the gals.Buttoned-up cardigans coupled with bare chests. Fantabulous proportions with blown up collars, turn-ups, pockets, buttons in fencing shirts and tartan rebel suits. Masks that read True Punk.
Fashion as a statement both of aesthetic rebellion and anger at a world being destroyed by greedy corporations and duplicitous politicians. Westwood’s designer partner Andreas Kronthaler also had the smart idea of linking up with Chrissie Hynde and incorporating the rocker’s prints in this collection, adding more kick.
“Buy less, dress up, swap clothes…. Dress for the time of day, or don’t dress for the time of day – wear your evening clothes to the office if you go back to work, mix seasons – our aim is to show only one collection a year,” explained Westwood, still a truly important designer at 79 years.
A great little video entitled Grid Girls and Pitt Boyz for UK brand LYPH, shot in some tumbled down English industrial derelict sites and streets.
Graphic nylon parkas; neoprene donkey jackets; all weather gear for ravers; color blocking clubbing clothes. Three-fingered salutes from dudes wearing baggy denims with jagged script inside Kanteena market. No shortage of attitude, and just right for next summer.
Preen by Thornton Bregazzi
Canal boat romanticism. Make that six girls in a boat at Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, where the cast ambled up an Olde England canal in a ruffled, curvaceous, Victorian frocks with tulip cuffs and erratic embroidery. Entitled Stitch me Back Together, this was something of a modest statement from Preen. Which on its day is one of the most innovative collections in London. Perhaps because these designers often seek inspiration from far distant ideas this lockdown-conditioned collection felt far too restrained.
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