Every city’s fashion week is so different. Each location has its own sense of style when it comes to showcasing the collections. This season, I was able to experience much more of London Fashion Week. The Britt’s really march to their own beat, and so many of the catwalk shows and presentations were incredibly unique.
LFW tends to be more colourful, embellished and artistic. Over the week, I discovered so many incredible designers, and was happy to see familiar ones too. There is such a flare to LFW that makes it so inspiring, and enjoyable to attend.
One of my favourite parts about LFW is all the young designers. There are so many up and coming talents, from many different backgrounds showcasing during the week. There seems to be quite a lot of support for emerging designers, with many group presentations taking place. On Sunday, we made our way down to Shoreditch to Devonshire Square for the Oxford Fashion Studio catwalk shows. The venue was created by a glass roof in between two old buildings. It was a beautiful Spring day, and the natural sunlight streamed into the room. We attended two back to back shows. First, Oxford Studio showcase featuring 6 emerging designers, Jasmine Chenel, Pavlina Jauss, DCR Studios, Chaahat Thakker, Rora and Anel. Following we saw German based designer, Leonie Mergen.
Founded in 2016, Leonie Mergen is a high-end, Berlin based designer who focuses on tailoring for both mens and womenswear. This season, Mergen was inspired by the Industrial Age, paying tribute to the past generations through her contemporary collection. The colour palette featured all neutral tones including tan, sand, black and white. These historical elements were showcase in beautiful, and very wearable garments. Leonie Mergen’s signature clean cuts and tailored style are all created and manufactured in Germany.
Paul Costelloe is a master tailor, known for creating beautiful, feminine clothing. I was very excited to be invited to his Fall 2019 runway show and it was definitely one of my highlights. The collection was named ‘Battlefield to Ballroom.’ Military elements and sharp silhouettes were created in luxurious fabrics. Rich autumn shades of green, purples and rust in the most beautiful fabrics strutted down the catwalk in the form of gowns, suiting and stunning outerwear. The tweeds and knits created a soft and feminine touch to the strong and strict uniforms.
One of the unique features about LFW is the home base at 180 The Strand near Somerset House. Once your registration is approved, you receive access to the showrooms. This hosts various designers to have their press and buying appointments, along with a presentation space. I was invited to attend a few presentations at the showrooms, but the stand out for me was Wesley Harriott.
As I entered the all black space, I was taken back by the strong monochromatic silhouettes. I was able to chat with the Tottenham-born fashion designer Ricky Wesley Harriott who many are saying is one to watch. He launched his brand in 2016 and in three short years his work has been featured in WWD, Vogue UK, Dazed, Refinery 29. Wesley Harriott is set to launch an exclusive Capsule Collection with ASOS later this year.
For AW19, the collection was called ‘Sixth Rank’ and was inspired by Empress, Dowager Cixi, and how she was depicted in the book ‘Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China’. Each look was very strong, in shades starting in deep black transitioning into charcoal greys and finally pure white. The deconstructed suits featured utilitarian silhouettes with hidden pockets, removable sleeves and internal belts. The Wesley Harriott woman is strong, fearless and yet still remains utterly feminine.
Stay tuned for Part Two of my London Fashion Week Review.