Glitz, glamor and going out: London Fashion Week returns to the show

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Glitz, glamor and going out: London Fashion Week returns to the show

The British capital was back in force this season, with a busy physical program and an electric atmosphere.

Determination was in the air at London Fashion Week, as the usual array of editors, influencers and celebrities braved Storm Eunice and some of the the highest wind speeds ever recorded in England, all in the name of fashion.

Morale was high, masks were scarce and the shows were packed. More than 50 labels on the program chose to perform in person, with the general theme of many shows being go big or go home. It spoke of a genuine appreciation for the craft and a palpable desire for normalcy.

This year, the designers announced were a mix of established talent and new talent. Savile Row’s first black tailor, Ozwald Boateng, for example, returned to London Fashion Week for the first time after a 12-year hiatus. But the event was largely geared towards newcomers: Postergirl and Conner Ives made their runway debuts, while LVMH Prize winner Nensi Dojaka held her highly anticipated show – just her second solo show.

Although there was a fair amount of pretending (James Walsh, a Central Saint Martins womenswear graduate, fashioned a bustier and shorts from a tree trunk), the impending removal of restrictions on coronavirus in the UK meant that some brands left daydreaming at the door and kept an eye on commercial viability.

“When we started making collections during the pandemic, it was just a matter of fantasy,” American designer Michael Halpern told CNN. “And now that we’re back to a collection some of which will go to stores, you have to be aware of both worlds.”

Read on for more takeaways from London shows.

The next generation

British designer Matty Bovan, winner of the 2021 Woolmark Prize, created his collection in America. Credit: David M. Benett/Getty Images

Harris Reed was inspired by the royal wardrobe and make-up of the Elizabethan era.

Harris Reed was inspired by the royal wardrobe and make-up of the Elizabethan era. Credit: Marc Hibert

Reed's drawings were

Reed’s designs were “a weirder take on kings…and kweens,” according to the show’s notes. Credit: Marc Hibert

The absence of fashion week heavyweights Burberry, Victoria Beckham and JW Anderson meant there was ample room for a new cohort of designers to get creative. Harris Reed, 25, put on a stately display of his flowing new designs in a Baroque-style Westminster Church, while Yuhan Wang – who graduated in 2016 – caught our eye with his tasselled leather suits, her faux fur coats and the inclusion of her cat, Misty.

Yuhan Wang sent her cat, Misty (far right), down the trail.

Yuhan Wang sent her cat, Misty (far right), down the trail. Credit: Tristan Fewings/BFC/Getty

James Walsh produced a matching tree trunk set for the Central Saint Martins show.

James Walsh produced a matching tree trunk set for the Central Saint Martins show. Credit: Stuart Wilson/BFC/Getty

Party life

Whether it’s a soulful orchestral rendition of Olivia Rodrigo’s “traitor” at Richard Quinn’s show, a German shoegaze band at Bora Aksu or Sam Smith at Reed’s presentation, live music was back this season as the creators really celebrated the return of physical shows after many went virtual amid the pandemic. It was the Roaring Twenties for RIXO, who showcased their new Golden Age collection in the grand setting of Goldsmith’s Hall, while Conner Ives partied like it’s 1999 with face jewelry, a – white plaster undertones and silk halter tops. .

RIXO is hosting an ultra glamorous presentation at Goldsmith's Hall in central London.

RIXO is hosting an ultra glamorous presentation at Goldsmith’s Hall in central London. Credit: David M. Benett/Getty Images

Halpern's new collection prioritized glitz, sequins and dramatic fringe.

Halpern’s new collection prioritized sequins, sequins and dramatic fringe. Credit: Gareth Cattermole/BFC/Getty Images

British designer Richard Quinn composed the soundtrack for his show with a live orchestra.

British designer Richard Quinn composed the soundtrack for his show with a live orchestra. Credit: Yui Mok

Butterfly clips, beaded sarongs and face gems gave the Conner Ives show a '90s vibe.

Butterfly clips, beaded sarongs and face gems gave the Conner Ives show a ’90s vibe. Credit: Jeff Spicer/BFC/Getty

It was the American designer's first show at London Fashion Week.

It was the American designer’s first show at London Fashion Week. Credit: Jeff Spicer/BFC/Getty Images

Richard Quinn's designs were often larger than life.

Richard Quinn’s designs were often larger than life. Credit: Gareth Cattermole/BFC/Getty Images

Just like Molly Goddard's signature taffeta ruffles.

Just like Molly Goddard’s signature taffeta ruffles. Credit: Jason Lloyd Evans

Goddard has created the perfect party wear for Fall/Winter 2022.

Goddard has created the perfect party wear for Fall/Winter 2022. Credit: Jason Lloyd Evans

While Quinn transformed the elegant evening wear on her head.

While Quinn transformed the elegant evening wear on her head. Credit: Gareth Cattermole/BFC/Getty Images Europe/Gareth Cattermole/Getty

Bora Aksu staged her parade at a fascinating church in South London.

Bora Aksu staged her parade at a fascinating church in South London. Credit: Shane Anthony Sinclair/BFC/Getty Images

Regroup

There have been a few notable collaborations this season, with London label Roksanda creating a range of glamping clothes with help from sports brand Fila, including wellies and windbreakers that looked more like dresses. prom, as well as a down jacket big enough to sleep on. in. Matty Bovan’s club kid take on Americana also included repurposed pieces from Vivienne Westwood, Calvin Klein and Converse All-Star.

Roksanda has collaborated with Fila on a range of glamping looks.

Roksanda has collaborated with Fila on a range of glamping looks. Credit: Estrop/WireImage

Matty Bovan recycled pieces from different designers in his Fall-Winter 2022 collection.

Matty Bovan recycled pieces from different designers in his Fall-Winter 2022 collection. Credit: Victor Virgil/Gamma-Rapho/Getty

Roksanda held her parade inside Tate Britain.

Roksanda held her parade inside Tate Britain. Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Images/Getty Images

sex sells

The skin was at the center of the Nensi Dojaka <a class=fashion show.”/>

The skin was at the center of the Nensi Dojaka fashion show. Credit: NIKLAS HALLE’N/AFP/Getty Images

Likewise at the SS Daley, less was more.

Likewise at the SS Daley, less was more. Credit: Jeff Spicer/BFC/Getty Images

The Fashion East show gave new meaning to the term

The Fashion East show gave new meaning to the term “open shirt”. Credit: Gareth Cattermole/BFC/Getty

Richard Quinn has used latex, dominatrix costumes and skintight silhouettes in his collection.

Richard Quinn has used latex, dominatrix costumes and skintight silhouettes in his collection. Credit: Gareth Cattermole/BFC/Getty Images

Rising star Nensi Dojaka managed to forge an alluring winter wardrobe by swapping knitwear for velvet in her lingerie-inspired Fall-Winter 2022 show; while British menswear designer Steven Stokey-Daley (of SS Daley) strayed from his typical production of bold shirts and Argyle knits to experiment with stripping – literally. One of her most memorable looks included nothing but a leather vest, black underwear, and a pair of sock suspenders.

famous faces

Idris Elba closed the Ozwald Boateng show, held at the Savoy Theater in London.

Idris Elba closed the Ozwald Boateng show, held at the Savoy Theater in London. Credit: Richard Young/Shutterstock

‘Top Boy’ actor Nicholas Pinnock was also part of the modeling lineup. Credit: David M. Benett/Getty Images

Irina Shayk walked the runway in a fuscia pink shawl dress.

Irina Shayk walked the runway in a fuscia pink shawl dress. Credit: Gareth Cattermole/BFC/Getty Images

Lila Moss also made an appearance on the Richard Quinn show.

Lila Moss also made an appearance on the Richard Quinn show. Credit: Estrop/WireImage/WireImage

Ozwald Boateng’s historic show took place on a specific type of starpower. An array of black talent, including actor Idris Elba and rapper Dizzee Rascal, featured in the modeling lineup, wearing perfectly tailored jewel-toned suits. Richard Quinn has also enlisted a handful of familiar faces, including rising model Lila Moss, daughter of fashion royalty Kate Moss, as well as Irina Shayk and drag queen Violet Chachki.

Top image: RIXO Fall-Winter 2022 presentation.

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