A week after London Fashion Week’s 25th anniversary spectacular drew to a close, from which my weary feet have just about recovered, I continue to burst with pride over my country’s phenomenal design talent.
Of course, the impressiveness of the fashion was in part down to the big-ticket names returning to the UK – Matthew Williamson, Burberry Prorsum and Pringle of Scotland to name three – whose collections stole most of the column inches. But whether it was this competition for favour which led to the regular London designers upping their design ante, or whether this was just the season when so many of them hit a rich vein of form, it was the striking collections from the likes of Christopher Kane, Louise Goldin and Richard Nicoll that really lit my fuse.
As Kane threw out highly sellable dress upon highly sellable dress, immaculate in cut yet easy to wear in shape, palette and print, the front row buyers sat up and took notice. Goldin’s more out-there designs still kept a close eye on wearability, with shell-like pleated skirts in sugary, silvery shades a statement dresser’s dream. And with US Vogue editor Anna Wintour herself on the front row of Nicoll’s show, his military-motif skirts are bound to be a big seller for spring 10.
London has long been held as the quirky fashion week, where off-the-wall designers can indulge concepts but need not consider the wearable aspects of their clothing. Due to this often unfounded reputation, the city often misses out on getting key international buyers’ bums on seats, as they assume there is nothing for their customers here. Let’s hope that what they saw this season has gone some way to dispelling this London myth and has done enough to encourage the return of such key buyers for LFW’s 26th year.