New vibes are the feeling we had during the London Fashion Week (#LFW). More than during the past seasons the British designers have succeeded in bringing something new, sometimes breaking with their usual languages. Everything seems new and exciting. It's always difficult to go off the beaten tracks, but this time they did not want to play safe.
Mary Katrantzou has certainly pinned on her mood board "exploring new direction", how to define a new look without killing her aesthetic or how to deliver a collection without her digital print signature that she is famous for. It was a real challenge to create her AW14 collection with no digital prints. Actually, there were prints but in a different perspective and it was an explosion of textures. What you could not expect was high end embroideries creating a complex maze pattern displayed on dresses, tops and sweaters. Katrantzou said some dresses needed days of handmade hard work to be finished. There were exquisite brocade suits that make you forget her traditional will to create her own pattern. There were nothing boxy, oversized or hourglass shapes like you could expect, but simple sharp cuts and elongated looks. There were also gorgeous asymmetrical pleats added on skirts and dresses like something non-controled. These pleated elements were something unexpected and soft on the stunning hardware chain-like dresses. This idea of hard and soft was also to be found on the chained apron worn over pleated bustier dresses.
More than hardware, low and profane attitude was really surprising for someone like Christopher Kane who worked with high end goods rather than ugly fabrics such as nylon. If you ask Christopher Kane about the choice of nylon he will certainly not consider it as ugly or use some negative adjectives to qualify it. Obviously, beauty can be found in the darkest places; perhaps that's what Kane had in mind for this collection. Not surprising for Kane to challenge the idea of ugly which he already referred to in his past collections, a kind of monstruous beauty. Unconventional beauty is a statement for us, but we are not sure that Kane is very fond of statements. There is nothing sexy and daring about nylon in a sense that women don't want to look like a trash bag, but Kane makes you forget this impression as the models are walking the runway. You can choose your oufit depending on if you have a strong personality daring to be in the long parka with the fur wrong side and the shocking brown dress. Or maybe, you prefer playing it safe with the woolen suit just adding a ruffle sleeved shirt? You love playing with fashion and the idea of nylon and fur (coat or a patch displayed on a dress) or lace and nylon is an easy decision like wearing this irreverent skirt made out of patent leather or vinyl with an alien green cut out sleeved polo neck sweater. This collection makes you wonder about good and bad taste. Approaching the end of the collection beauty is less retained, less kept like the flower behind the pvc patches on the dress. The nylon and lace dresses look more appealing as pink literally stands out. Kane put a lightly ending to this intense collection as the origami dresses came out. And it feels like a happy ending.
These pictures come from Style.com