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London Fashion Week: Henry Holland's rock and roll rebels and other key highlights

House of Holland’s show plus other highlights from day two including Whistles, Barbara Casasola, Hunter Original and more.

Tongue in cheek designer Henry Holland’s muse for spring 15 was the groupie, “a young woman who seeks to achieve status by having sex with rock musicians”, according to the show notes. This translated into a slightly retro rocker look with garish psychedelic florals and three dimensional lace in acid brights covering basic dresses, skirts and tops.

Whistles ticked off many of the emerging trends of the new season, starting with its starkly monochrome palette of black and white, with a subtle splash of baby pink. Prints were restrained to a simple palm frond pattern, while silhouettes were loose, wide and easy to wear.

There were plenty of pleats at Barbara Casasola, where plissé and knife pleats breathed volume into skirts topped with body con bodices, often sliced with fluid cut out panels. Casasola’s signature blazer jackets were double breasted for spring and featured elegant built in wrapped belts, which cinched in waists.

A sporty style was a fresh direction for Jasper Conran, who took the recurring summer trend in a crisp yet wearable direction. A looser silhouette emerged for the designer, with bomber jackets that fell away from the body edged with neat ribbed trims in Wimbledon white. Stripes smudged into scribbles and abstract splatters were the key prints, usually in dark but appealing tones for spring of brown, grass green and navy.

Although hard to top its much-discussed London fashion week debut last season (complete with a water-filled catwalk and even a magician), the first spring clothing collection from Hunter Original made a strong impression, set in a leisure centre and focused on a poolside theme with accompanying visuals by artist Mat Maitland. The clothes themselves were a lighter weight counterpart to the heavy outerwear the brand showed for autumn, with cagoules, macs and boxy jackets in olive khaki tones (another of this season’s emerging key colours) as well as pretty purple and yellow. Utility pockets and belts added interest, as well as contrast patch pockets and trims, which lifted some of the more basic pieces.

Doing what he does best, Julien Macdonald’s glamorous, ultra-feminine collection was red-carpet ready with each look. Although sheer panels, thigh splits and glittering embellishments were still present with some dresses, this collection felt less Strictly Come Dancing than we’re used to seeing from the designer, with ladylike pencil dresses and long cap sleeves offering an elegant style that offers buyers a broader choice for a wider range of customers.

Minnie Mouse-style oversized bows adorned the heads of models at the Sibling show, with the brand presenting the kind of exuberant, youthful collection we’ve come to expect. It is fun to see the trends of the season played out in such a young direction, for example gingham – an emerging trend of the season in New York – was present, particularly in a sheer crop top with oversized ruffles and sheer panels. As always, the range was anchored by signature knits, with super-short skater dresses standing out, along with some more commercially accessible pencil skirts.

Summer dresses at Holly Fulton came in all kinds of shapes and cuts, from long sleeve to off-the-shoulder, high neck to V-neck, ankle-skimmer to on-the-knee. Elegant and wearable, it was an everywoman kind of range, with an emphasis on flattering silhouettes and pretty embellishments.

Lulu Kennedy’s Lulu & Co made its debut at London fashion week, with punchy prints and in your face sparkly embellishment sure to catch the eye of fashion-focused young fashion followers, while hard edged streetwear star Nasir Mazhar gave another hit of his signature look, this time featuring logoed harnesses and multi-tiered wrapped silhouettes.

The simple style of Lucas Nascimento’s designs continued to belie his skills as one of London’s rising stars, but the wearable quality in much of his minimalist creations is gathering a growing number of fans. This season his approach was more directional, with looks almost split in half, with semi jumpers covering half the body and draping around the waist, while semi wraps covered one leg and dresses featured a single sleeve. Elsewhere, this look was translated into wearable dresses with printed sheath panels creating a layered effect.

Presenting a new, much more wearable aesthetic than seen in some of his former collections, JW Anderson’s range received a highly positive response from the watching crowd at LFW. From strong separates to beautifully cut coats, although the range is still directional it will leave buyers with plenty of more commercial options for the coming season.

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