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London Fashion Week: day two, buyer diary

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Lisa Aiken, fashion director at American online retailer Moda Operandi, shares her highlights from the second day of London Fashion Week. 

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Halpern, autumn 19

Following a strong start, the capital’s designers put on an impressive display of creative diversity on day two of London Fashion Week (LFW).

The day opened with a refined and sophisticated collection from Eudon Choi, followed by a feminine catwalk show from AWAKE, which featured silhouettes inspired by Elizabethan dress. Presentations from Alice Archer and a catwalk from Malene Oddershede Bach displayed elegant and feminine floral influences – with a sense of poise and ladylike refinement.

In contrast to this, London’s designers also brought bold, exhuberant drama to the table. Molly Goddard’s collection – which was shown within the grand halls of the Foreign Office – featured brash neons on flouncing dresses, as well as her signature wild volume. Elsewhere, king of the sequin Michael Halpern’s latest collection for his eponymous brand alluded to the opulence and glamour of the USA, while House of Holland presented a catwalk brimming with clashing colours, prints and cultural influences.

The day closed with collections from prominent London names Simone Rocha and Mary Katrantzou. 

Lisa Aiken, fashion director at Moda Operandi shares her personal take on a busy second day.

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AWAKE, autumn 19

Why do you attend LFW?

London Fashion Week is just as important as the other fashion capitals. Not only does is it the source of so much emerging talent, the London line-up now has several established names that have built solid businesses over the past five to 10 years, including the likes of Christopher Kane, Simone Rocha and Roksanda.

What are you looking for in the LFW shows this season? 

New talent tops the watch list, alongside a level of individualistic creativity that is unmatched in other cities.

How was today at LFW?

The line-up today was very strong, starting with one of my favourite brands – AWAKE, as well as a host of smaller shows, including Roberts Wood, which I was really impressed by.

What collections stood out ?

Molly Goddard, Simone Rocha and Halpern were all incredible. Each brand focused singularly on evolving their signature aesthetic, which is a testament to their clarity of vision as designers.

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Molly Goddard, autumn 19

Are there any trends or must buys emerging from the collections so far?

The overall mood so far is a return to a beautifully understated approach to dressing: pant suits, the predominantly neutral palette, head-to-toe knitwear and – shock! – practical-size bags, could walk off the runway and into our everyday lives.

In terms of fabrics, we’re seeing an updated version of classic heritage looks, from check to plaid to tweed, in both bold and neutral shades, as well as quite a bit of leather.

On the accessory front, cream and ivory are replacing optic white. The wide-legged, knee-high boot in statement textures and 1990s bag shapes all made an impact.

How was New York?

The New York line-up has lost some key players in recent seasons. However, this has opened up opportunities for younger brands including the likes of Khaite and Deveaux, both of which delivered stand-out shows.

Many of the shows in New York tried to answer the needs of the modernist woman’s wardrobe, which is undoubtedly an opportunity in the absence of Phoebe Philo at Celine. That said, Marc Jacobs’ show was breathtakingly beautiful, and I am hoping for more of those moments as fashion month progresses.

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