Let's Talk About London Fashion Week

Milan fashion week is coming to an end, but first let's discuss what happened pre-Milan and post-New York: London. Shall we?
Publish date:
February 29, 2012
London Fashion Week Fall 2012

You may be wondering where the hell I’ve been since New York fashion week ended over a week ago. Well, friends, truth is, I’ve just been reeling in the beauty of what have been the fall collections so far. You see, fall is personally my favorite fashion season. Not because the actual time of year happens to feel completely magical in this big ol’ town (New York City), but because designers deliver their most inspiring collections – in my humble opinion – just as the rest of the world dreams only of spring showers and May flowers.

The autumn offerings are so much more decadent, fanciful and exciting, the runways feel richer, there are more things to see (layers upon layers of beautiful, interesting fabrics) and, well, there is something to be said about a season that is evocative of a brand new start, right?

Anyway, back at the Bat Cave. Milan fashion week is coming to an end, which I will be getting to in another article, because first I need to discuss what happened pre-Milan and post-New York: London. You see, London fashion week was on a somewhat lower speed a while back, and frankly, simply overlooked. To my great pleasure, the past few years have been very favorable in overturning that fate. It kind of all started in September 2009 when Burberry’s creative director, Christopher Bailey, decided to take his fashion show back to the motherland (it was previously set in Milan).

Around that same time, young designers like Christopher Kane and Erdem were gaining momentum, and the likes of Mary Katrantzou, Mark Fast, and Hakaan, to name a few, were making huge noise, commanding the presence of big time editors like Carine Roitfeld when she was at the helm of Paris Vogue. And, just like that, London fashion week - though always known for its gestation of über-creative new talent (after all, they do harbor the most famous fashion school in the world, Central Saint Martins) – was back on the radar.

Ok, enough about that! I do often tend to veer into lesson-giving territory, but it’s for your own good, people.A little context never hurt anyone. Moving right along, I was curious to see what London would have in store after New York’s strong start. After all, this is the city known for its quirky, creative scene and where rising stars truly shine. We saw tons of amazing statements, fun prints, loads of color and real standout collections.

Here’s a bit of a rundown… Mary Katrantzou has made intricate, exuberant, trompe l’oeil prints her signature and her fall 2012 show was a demonstration of growth, innovation and newness. Not an easy feat. She makes watching her show truly exciting. Christopher Kane has seriously set the bar so high for himself – he is such a talent. He presented a beautiful collection, with a more luxurious feel than what we’ve come to know him for. Gorgeous. Giles, never one to design for the shrinking violet, introduced exquisite pieces fit for a stroll in an enchanted forest.

It was also a week of firsts: McQ’s runway opus hit the catwalk in an “I’ve arrived” type of way – the clothes had that undeniable McQueen sensibility, while translating a more accessible quality. The unexpected twist came courtesy of the fantastic Stella McCartney, who shows her collection in Paris. She added to the greatness that is London fashion week by presenting an eveningwear capsule collection.

And then it comes back to Burberry, the quintessential English house. No one could argue with what Christopher Bailey has done for the label since he took it over and there is no doubt that turning a heritage brand into a youthful, fashionable and still classic label by offering insanely covetable pieces season after season is seriously admirable. This time around he married two unlikely contenders – Town and Field, sending out Burberry’s signature strong outerwear, charming little owl tops, perfectly offsetting tweed skirts and stunning military jackets. Also, the fashion set ain’t close of forgetting that finale: planned thundershowers and gold confetti falling from the sky. Everyone had a smile on their face - seriously, even the most jaded of the jaded. But isn't that fashion should always do? Well, i think so anyway.

All images via style.com