As we arrived into the vestibule of Freemasons’ Hall ready to take our seats for the Ashley Isham SS17 show, it was hard not to trip over the giant inflatable flamingos and the swimsuit-clad models that were sunning themselves across the catwalk. As we say a firm farewell to the warm sunny days here in London, Isham is already in the midst of next summer, enjoying scorching heat set against a disco soundtrack.
The show kicked off with the models casually getting up and dressing themselves before sauntering through the room in groups as if winding their way back to their hotel after a long day at the pool. It was a stark contrast with the usual ‘glue everything down’ backstage catwalk prep, but one which added a bit of entertainment and humour to proceedings, as well as showing off just how wearable the SS17 collection is.
As the music transitioned into another seventies hit that had the frow dancing in their seats, the collection bounced down the catwalk in time to the beat. Featuring both mens and womenswear, the clothes were a feast of patterns, textures and colours, clashing together in the best way.
For daytime beach chic, women had the option of fabulously floral bikinis or sultry satin swimsuits, finished with ruffled, lacy coverups and hats adorned with glitter or pompos, while men sported matching three-piece bomber jacket/short suits and caps with even bigger pompoms dangling from each side.
As the sun goes down, things get a little more subtle, with prints being paired with single-colour wide leg trousers, long and flowing draped dresses over a glittering leg and tasselled, shimmering metallics, all still paired with cascading pompom earrings. Men follow suit with monochrome printed shirts and shorts and all-in-one velour.
As the models once again discarded their clothes for a disco-dancing swimsuit finale, the room seemed uplifted with the prospect of Isham’s pool party plans for next summer. She’s combined all our favourite things from the age of disco into one, well-rounded package that somehow turns chintzy into chic. With its bright colours, sense of fun and endless possibilities of mixing and matching, there should be no SS17 suitcase that doesn’t contain a few faves from the collection. We’ll take one of those pompom visors please.
Images: Ellen Offredy | Fashion Week Photographer | @ellenoffredy