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Tailoring returns to London Fashion Week

Playing to their unique strengths, designers at London Fashion Week presented a parade of instantly recognisable collections.

Risk averse and commercially focused, the creative mood has been defined largely by each designer’s inherent personality. And, rarely have collections been more accurately pitched at their target customers.

It was no surprise then that Vivienne Westwood created a tartan-rich collection for her Red label. With its St Trinian’s schoolgirl theme the mix of sharply tailored separates will be an instant hit with Japanese buyers.

Over at Aquascutum, the tailoring theme continued with a relatively sober presentation pitched at a well-heeled 30-plus customer. With its sophisticated mix of luxe-look 1970s-tinged double-breasted tailoring, house-check splashed dresses and high-waisted tapered trousers the collection was a masterclass in reserved elegance.

Eley Kishimoto also ticked tailoring boxes with a playful mix of 1960s-inspired air stewardess skirt suits which loudly referenced the brand’s core strengths in both print and pattern.

Elsewhere, younger players such as Christopher Kane had consulted previous seasons’ order books, updating past sales winners such as his organza ruffle tops, which this time around appeared with a velvet ribbon trim.

The popularity of dresses continued apace with contrast panels and dramatic shoulder details informing the season’s key looks. More interesting was how widely tailoring has been embraced for autumn 09. Archive inspired structured silhouettes coursed through countless presentations with skirts, trousers and suit jackets underlining a broad return to big ticket demure daywear.

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