Designers Offer Winter Romance, Trip to the Country at London Fashion Week

By Marie-Louise Gumuchian

LONDON (Reuters) – British designer labels took fashionistas on dream-like escapes, to snowy mountain peaks and the English countryside at London Fashion Week on Sunday, presenting luxurious embellished looks for women’s wardrobes.

Anya Hindmarch kicked off the day’s autumn/winter 2017 catwalk shows with a Scandinavian-inspired collection of women’s satchels, handbags, outerwear and shoes.

On a catwalk made to look like a snow-covered mountain, models in furry hats and goggle-like glasses descended from a peak carrying bags with colourful handwoven leather straps, structured backpacks and small purses, all adorned with clipped-on garlands, sparkly butterflies and layered hearts.

Hindmarch used suede, vegetable tanned leathers and long-haired shearling for her creations, which came in pinks, blues, mustard yellow, browns and grey.

Models wore knits over shorts or wool and felt coats and capes with colourful furry collars or panels. Furry shawls were tied on top. Footwear included embellished clogs with furry insides, slippers, sandals and creeper shoes.

“Autumn Winter 2017 explores the contrast between the romanticised notions of winter and wanderlust and the darker motifs found in Old Norse folklore,” Hindmarch said in shownotes.

“This has been explored through modern interpretations of traditional leather craft techniques, including Scandinavian Kurbits and complex hand-woven leatherwork.”

At Mulberry, creative director Johnny Coca took inspiration from the British aristocracy’s life in the countryside, showcasing tweeds, lace and embroidery in his designs.

He presented equestrian-inspired quilted capes, blouses with knotted neck scarves or cuffs and asymmetric skirts.

Models wore crochet and ruffle dresses made to look like old heirlooms. Floral embroidery decorated oversized tweed jackets and skirts suits as well as tiered dresses.

“It’s about making something traditional feel new,” Coca said in a statement. “Taking these archetypal British styles, and making them feel right for today.”

Vintage-like jewellery accessorised the looks in oxblood, ginger, green, purple, yellow, lavender and blue. A modern touch came in knit socks worn with sturdy heeled boots and loafers dressed with jewellery. Handbags nodded to travel luggage.

At a catwalk show held in the financial Bank area, Temperley London took fashionistas onto a dreamy, romantic escapade with models wearing soft dresses in pale blues, lilacs and pinks.

Designer Alice Temperley kicked off her “Painted Dreams” presentation with peasant-like shirts with puffed up sleeves, tops with high regal collars and black neck bows, high waisted trousers and embroidered tops and skirts combinations in mainly dark colours.
Then followed plenty of dresses, some see-through, with prints and intricate embroidery of florals or lips, worn with backless loafers.

For the evening, models showcased richly-embellished shimmering gowns, light quilted-like skirts and dresses and luxurious silky jumpsuits. High-neck knits were worn with sequined skirts.

“I am selling very beautiful clothes and they have to be…dream-like,” Temperley told Reuters when asked about her inspiration. “And in a climate like today…it’s about creating something that…celebrates diversity and celebrates individuality.”

(Additional reporting by Jane Witherspoon and Pedro Caiado; Editing by Mark Potter and Susan Thomas)