I’m not going to lie; walking into the LCM showspace for Oliver Spencer’s AW16 catwalk show with David Gandy, Oliver Cheshire, Tiny Tempah, and Ricky Wilson was potentially the best moment of my entire life. But this post isn’t about handsome men (sadly); it’s about the outstanding show that Spencer put on for us. As soon as the lights went down and the saxophone riff started, it was clear that this show was going to be something special. Inspired by the unlikely collaboration some 45 years ago between maverick drummer Ginger Baker and African musician Fela Kuti, the collection marched onto the catwalk in earth-toned retro prints straight from the 70s.

  

Channelling true vintage style, fabrics were patchwork suede, brown corduroy and ribbed knitting. Prints also played a vital role in the collection, ranging from potato stamp prints to tweed and tartan. Round sunglasses once again made an appearance on the catwalk, settling in nicely to the 70s vibe, proving that a cold spell cannot halt the unstoppable reign of this eyewear trend. Bags, too, featured in the collection; leather rucksacks and chic holdalls complemented the designs perfectly.

  

The show was dedicated to John Bradbury, the late musician who had frequently collaborated with Spencer in recent years and who was a close friend of the designer, so it was undoubtedly no coincidence that some of the styling bore a striking resemblance to his mod-esque look.

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The collection as a whole exemplified the contrast between quintessential British styling and tribal African culture, and how the two came together in the music of Baker and Kuti. Taking us on a journey from London to Africa in just a few short minutes, Spencer exceeded the expectations surrounding the show that was touted as the most anticipated of LCM day 2. With Gandy et al on board, there’s no telling what new heights Spencer will reach next season -  we can't wait to report back.

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Words: Katharine Bennett | Fashion Week Press | @misskatebennett

Images: Kaye Ford | Fashion Week Photography | @fordtography