Author: Camilla Hunt

Who's Jack Fashion Week Editor, avid Bukowski enthusiast and lover of all things sequin.

The BFC showspace was packed on day 4 of fashion week, expectantly waiting for Faustine Steinmetz’s girl army to take to the catwalk. Formerly eschewing shows for presentations to avoid sensationalising the fashion industry, the designer decided to make her catwalk debut back in September and learnt that she could put just as much of her own spin on it as she could with specially-designed sets, showing off her reworkings of classic styles in all their glory. And we couldn’t wait to see how the AW18 Steinmetz woman would be painted on the blank canvas of this season’s catwalk.

Set to the sounds of some of our favourite 90s R&B ladies, the collection was, as ever, a delight to the well-organised mind. Steinmetz’s staple pieces returned with fresh updates, allowing the wearer to concentrate less on what to wear and more on which piece would perfectly reflect her personality and individual style.

A veritable uniform of trench coats, shirts, jeans and slip dresses came down the runway, each nodding to the others with coordinating details and textures, but at the same time retaining its own unique DNA.

Pale green silks and woody browns wovens join the designer’s signature denim; which this season has become deeper and darker than SS18, with knitted and felted additions to both tops and jeans providing texture.

Things are definitely matchy-matchy this season, with layers of sultry silks in different finishes, cosy cream knitwear and denims of slightly different grains and colours building on top of themselves on each model into entire outfits.

Accessories, too, are not exempt from the Steinmetz treatment; Fendi-esque baguettes become beaded and covered in Swarovski crystals, adding a little glamour to casual silhouettes, and the ultimate in Parisian chic, the Hermès horse-print scarf, appeared as slinky below-the-knee skirts and slouchy handkerchief tops.

It’s impressive and, ultimately, completely baffling that Steinmetz approaches each season with the same blueprint, and yet the collections that are revealed are so unique and instantly covetable. They’re at once pieces that you could expect to find in your own wardrobe at home, but also totally fresh and exciting, speaking of a season to come where you can be both up-to-the-minute on-trend and comfortable.

As the models did their final walk and we saw the collection as a whole, it was almost like creating an outfit using that computer wardrobe from Clueless that we all long for – if you loved a top but weren’t sure if the jeans with it would suit, the outfit following along behind it would surely offer you another option that would coordinate just as well. It’s a vision for the future of fashion which inspires and delights – quite frankly, I would wear the Steinmetz uniform any day of the week.

Words: Katharine Bennett | Fashion Week Press | @misskatebennett

Images: Joshua Atkins | Fashion Week Photographer | @joshuaatkins

 

Fashion loves a slogan – it’s one of the easiest and most effective ways to convey a message through clothing. Amid our current uncertain social and political climate, more and more designers seek to make a statement that goes beyond the fashion. From Dior’s “We should All be Feminists” to Gucci and Balenciaga’s self-riffing logos, slogans have certainly had a resurgence of late. If done well, they can reach iconic status and go down in fashion history – i.e. the likes of Katharine Hamnett. However, if done poorly they can feel forced, disingenuous and meaningless.

 

 

Presented against the backdrop of a mock warehouse, UNDERAGE’s AW18 collection had something to say. Inspired by the punk movement of a bygone era of youth subculture, the collection aimed to capture the zeitgeist through a selection of unisex looks adorned with a range of slogans: “We Are Youth,” “Live Fast Die Young,” “Yada Yada Yada” – garments cried out in bold strokes of red, yellow and gold, expressing a contempt for authority and an aim to celebrate rebellion, nonconformity and self-expression.

 

 

A successful slogan should be witty, intelligent and original – if not thought provoking. It should be something that people feel compelled to display upon themselves as a statement aimed at letting the world know who they are and what they stand for. This was lacking here, slogans felt unimaginative and uninspiring; “Yada Yada Yada” – is this what young people really want to proudly wear as an emblem of their beliefs and identity?

 

 

In a fusion of decades of youth culture iconography, brooding models wore spray painted Doc Marten style boots, conservatively tailored pieces; overcoats, trousers and blazers, juxtaposed with more contemporary pieces; hoodies, puffer jackets and bum bags – all screen printed with skull motifs, mock- devoré metallics and graffiti- esque graphics.

 

 

Titled Riots of Our Own this was UNDERAGE’S reimagining of what someone of a similar mind-set to a 70’s punk would wear today. Capturing the essence of youthful rebellion in a post subculture world – in which fashion has become a lot more homogenised, is no easy feat; but quite literally spelling it out across a selection of garish garments is not quite convincing as a particularly fresh or modern approach. Is this what the youth of today, even those who regard themselves as the most nonconforming, want to wear? The sentiment was there but the execution felt crude and somewhat cliché.

 

 

Words: Lucy Hardy | Fashion Week Writer | @lula_har

Images: Mikayla Miller | Fashion Week Photographer | @mikaylajeanmiller

Are millennials the most self-centred generation ever?

You know how the media storyline goes: all narcissistic behaviour disorder, pantone pinks and lashings of avocado on toast.  We are in an age fuelled by the endless opportunity for self-promotion via social media, combined with a cultural attitude that hails self-esteem and personal-positivity as both the single most important and most destructive skill we can possess. But is this unashamed celebration of the self really such a bad thing? We say, not when you’ve got a damn good reason to toot your horn.

Enter then, Ryan Lo, whose AW18 presentation was dedicated to his one true passion in life: himself. “It is simply about what I love to do!”, Lo describes of this one-off special edition collection of his greatest creative hits, all set against the perfectly apt millennial pink backdrop of David Shrigley’s gallery restaurant at Sketch.

 

Drop-waist tulle gowns (fit for the modern day princess) lean effortlessly next to chevron-striped lace, in sugar-rich shades sweet enough to warrant a filling. Jumping straight from saccharine to seductive, lace takes on a whole new light as it covers (just) a reclining figure luxuriously draped in black, revealing and concealing in all the right places. Luckily this particular model is a cold, hard mannequin, with little regard for modesty but a high regard for matching flapper-style opera gloves that just tickle the elbow for an extra smack of decadence.

 

There is inspiration here that spans the ages, regaling not only the fashionable history of our time, but of Lo’s reputable archive. He often draws upon child-like nostalgia, filtering his designs through a romantic lens to create eclectic designs that are both feminine and fantastical - and this collection embodies all that and more. From hyper-modern kawaii fabrics that shimmer in the light, to exaggerated victoriana style pussybows that are dramatic and demure in equal measure, this collection is a true celebration of the full Ryan Lo spectrum.

 

There is always a criticism that surrounds millennials, in that we are wrongly raised to believe that we can be whoever we want to be. But anything is possible for the woman in this Lo’s rose-tinted fantasy world. The flapper. The hostess. The queen. There’s no cohesive story here as such, just great threads, great women and the great man who designed them. “I love me” is a juxtaposing curation of Lo’s favourites and celebration of everything he has achieved - and when it looks as good as this, long may the self-love continue. Just don’t tell the elders.

 

Words: Camilla Hunt | Fashion Editor | @camillamcleanhunt

Fyodor Golan's AW18 London Fashion Week collection was a high-flying, yet utterly down-to-earth showcase of motion and colour. The creative duo, who are known for their experimental flair, this time drew their new season concept from the sky. Rainbows inspired the aesthetics and colour scheme, while hot air balloons influenced the dynamic movements of every piece. The show, In collaboration with MTV, struck a youthful chord proving that leisurewear is constantly being adopted and adapted by each generation.

 

With planets and orbs decorating the showspace, this was certainly one collection that hoped to elevate edgy styles to new heights. The retro 1980s feel of the collection was injected with a spectrum of colour that exuded a thoroughly playful spirit. Pleated skirts layered over tracksuits challenged the traditional rules of luxury leisurewear while preaching the Fyodor Golan X MTV attitude of being young, adventurous and original.

 

 

Fyodor Golan's ethos of always achieving new modes of motion was enhanced by the literal and metaphorical idea of hot air balloons. Sweeping dresses with gathered hems Vs fluent tracksuits moved with a light and effortless breeze, poised to take flight. The collection is also prepped for the Autumn/Winter season, with chunky knits and over-sized jackets.

 

 

The show succeeded in creating ready-to-wear fashion that is ready to reach unlimited heights and still, it came across as accessible to anyone.

 

Words: Sophie Joaman| Fashion Week Press|

Images: Martina Bruno | Fashion Week Photographer | @martinabrunoph

 

Let’s play a game.

We’ll start: if the end of the world was nigh, where would you be?
It’s likely you’ve already made this foray into the hypothetical by now. After all, who hasn’t discussed at length the best place to stow away -  and how best to arm yourself - should the (almost) inevitable environmental/political/zombie apocalypse come a’knockin’.

 

 

Zombies aside, this is clearly a thought that has weighed on the ever-imaginative mind of Matty Bovan, British fashion’s bright young thing and solo runway debutante, with his first standalone show away from the nurturing bosom of Fashion East. Over the past two years his particular brand of dystopian folklore has captivated those seeking a welcome escape from their daily reality, and his AW18 collection continues to serve them with aplomb.

 

 

So where is Bovan seeking to establish his future world? North Yorkshire. Home not only to his garden studio out the back of his mother’s house, but to the wiley, windy moors where, for this latest work, Bovan’s mind has rolled and falled in green. For Bovan, the famous moors are the location for his survivalist settlement; an all-consuming abyss that combines romance and isolation in equal measure. But remember, as Nietzsche suggested, if thou gaze long into the abyss, the abyss will also gaze into thee.

 

 

And so the collection was rich in savage beauty, with heritage tweeds unravelling at the hem and outdoorsy knits (created in collaboration with Wool and the Gang) stretched and deconstructed to expose the skin underneath. Ravaged remains that only just survived the blast. Houndstooth, often the fabric of the countryside elite, is tattered and contorted; thrown haphazardly together with pastel tulle and textured terrycloth to create a post-apocalyptic uniform that’s tinged with glamour.

 

Ladylike separates, inspired by Bovan’s own grandmother, are literally torn apart and pieced back together, suggesting that the ruling class in this future universe is whoever has the gusto to survive.

 

To elevate the girls, quite literally, into this brave new world, Bovan enlisted the help of renowned conceptual milliner Stephen Jones to create headpieces formed of clustered balloons, not unlike the kind you used to lust after as a child. A striking symbol of weightlessness in a collection dominated by heavy fabrics and layers so loaded that they practically fall from the body, they almost whisked the models off their feet into the great unknown. Will we follow? Just try and stop us.

 

 

Words: Camilla Hunt | Fashion Editor | @camillamcleanhunt
Images: Mikayla Miller | Fashion Week Photographer | @mikaylajeanmiller