Mary Katrantzou AW ’11
If Day 4 was about the ultimate Fashion Week experiences, the final day of womenswear was all about the ultimate wardrobe. Mary Katrantzou, who last season displayed a study in opulent 1960s interiors, this time turned her deft hand to the objets d’art within those rooms; a Faberge egg, a William Morris tapestry sofa, an antique porcelain vase from the Orient. Only Mary, a true artisan, could make me want to break the family antiques into tiny pieces and transform them into a mini skirt. There are the sort of clothes that are just begging to be transplanted out of the curiosity cabinet and into my wardrobe – to be taken to a fabulous Cambridgean soiree where I’d happily coordinate with the aristocratic furnishings.
Roksanda Ilincic AW ’11
Meadham Kirchoff AW ’11
Charlotte Olympia shoes on the runway at Emilio de la Morena AW ’11
Rouge, blood-red, crimson… whatever you like to call it, red seemed to be the order of the day at the other noteworthy shows on the schedule. From Roksanda’s ball-worthy silk gowns on parade at the magnificent Institute of Directors on Pall Mall and Emilio de la Morena’s lingerie-inspired dresses, to the tough-sexy variations at Marios Schwab and Meadham Kirchoff’s dirndl army, I suddenly had an inexplicable urge to don some crimson lipstick and rush out and buy some red couture (a colour demonstrably absent from my real-life wardrobe).
Aquascutum AW ’11
Yet even in my most elaborate sartorial fantasies, I can’t live on rouge silk dresses and chinoiserie prints alone. *Cue Aquascutum, stage left* Joanna Skyes’ debut as design director at Aquascutum was a revelation. Presenting a collection of clean, controlled tailoring meets pared-back femininity, it simultaneously refreshed the iconic British brand and had every woman in the room (the First Lady included) hanging on her every look. These were the kind of classic ‘investment’ pieces that would actually incite cravings, rather than boredom (for instance, the two-toned putty-coloured wool trench, above, is possibly the most perfect coat I’ve ever seen. It had me mentally rearranging my closet to work outfits around it, yet would still slide perfectly from the ‘fantasy wardrobe’ into a very practical reality).
Charlotte Olympia AW ’11
Finally, and as the perfect conclusion to Fashion Week (I’ve for now chosen to erase Ashish, the actual finale, from my memory…), we stole away to Mayfair for a Charlotte Dellal/Olympia (she of those gasp-inducing shoes) soiree. After ringing the bell of the Mark’s Club (the most exclusive private members club in London), it seemed we had stepped into a party straight out of a Film Noir. There were waiters in white tie, gin cocktails being served up at the bar, femme fatales and a murder mystery in the screening room upstairs. All this, complete with gloves that wittily looked like manicured hands, and shoes – dotted about the drawing room in bell jars – to die for. In reality I may have been wearing the weary expression of sleep deprivation and enough brooches on my lapel to give the crown jewels a run for their money, but in my fantastical visions I was clad in a vampish rouge silk Roksanda Ilincic gown and Charlotte Olympia shoes so high they’d give any self-respecting Hitchcock heroine a case of vertigo.
So, where would I take my fantasy vampish rouge silk gown, you may ask? Why, to a mysterious bash in a Mayfair mansion house, of course.
And so I say ‘farewell’ to Somerset House, for this season at least. I hope you enjoyed our forays into the world of Fashion Week.
Love, Miss B xx