Charli Cohen has fast become a household name at fashion week, known for her impeccable sportswear design talent and structured aesthetic which develops hugely season on season. So as we descended into the vaults of the Royal Society of Arts on Friday evening, we were looking forward to seeing what she’d been working on this time.
As we walked into the room, it was instantly clear that this collection, called CC2S, has a meaning. Models stood or lounged on pedestals in pairs, snapping selfies, scrolling through feeds and double tapping pictures, whilst a screen at the end of the space showed flashing images and clips of our social-media obsessed society (which we, of course, instantly Instagrammed).
The clothes definitely verged more towards sports luxe than activewear this season, mixing Cohen’s technical materials with sophisticated silhouettes. Elegant black dungarees and slim white roll-neck tops created soft eveningwear, whilst loose pastel jackets and tops provided comfortable street style. Straps and other hardware, sometimes emblazoned with CC2S or CONSUMED, were worn on top of some outfits, giving them a surprisingly different outline that changed them into bold statement pieces.
Shoes, too, were like sportswear on acid – trainers became supersize flatforms and glossy white pointed boots sat below dresses and skirts. The collection also included Cohen’s debut in knitwear, again bridging the gap between gym wear and day wear.
This season the designer has once more played with fabrics and textures, introducing technical ‘silk’, bonded scuba and ultra-light materials to create clothes with all the right kinds of movement – everything in the room looked at once on-trend and super-comfy (pretty much the dream, right?).
With this collection, Charli Cohen has once again showed us how much talent she has, and indeed still has left to give, once more evolving her style to keep us on our toes. It is a collection that will endure our panicked consumption of the new and the different with its finely-tuned perfection in style, design and construction, taking a refreshing slow down in a fashion world that just keeps moving faster.