London Fashion Week Gets a Conscience
While today, 16th February, is the official opening day of London Fashion Week AW18, for some the party had already begun. Last night the likes of Katie Eary, Juno Calypso + Galeria Melissa, LCF MA graduates and VIN + OMI previewed their collections and held social events.
Always a firm favourite with the FashionCapital team VIN + OMI present more than just cloth and thread, their collections always question the damage we are doing to the environment and the design duo wholeheartedly embrace sustainability in their use of fabrics and in their underlying inspiration. They aren’t shy of bringing in the odd celebrity model or three either.
VIN + OMI AW18 by Chris Daw
Moving into the official launch day press and buyers will notice the #POSITIVE FASHION slogan all over the main BFC venue on the Strand. ‘Positive Fashion’ is a new LFW platform designed to promote and celebrate diversity, sustainability and openness; encouraging fashion to be used as a platform to promote global positive change. In the centenary year of the Women’s Vote campaign, LFW has joined the movement to promote and celebrate inclusivity across the fashion industry.
Now in its 67th edition LFW features a 5-day catwalk schedule and Designer Showrooms while DiscoveryLAB features the pioneers, the established and the emerging bringing together the creative industries from fashion to music, art and design. With the fashion industry directly contributing £29.7billion to the UK GDP in 2016 ($41.7billion), according to data from Oxford Economics, the fashion industry is no shrinking violet and can easily be put on a par with other major economic sectors.
JW Anderson, winner of the British Womenswear Designer of the Year at ‘The Fashion Awards 2017’ in partnership with Swarovski, will merge womenswear and menswear and show on Saturday morning alongside British Emerging Talent Womenswear winner, Michael Halpern who is showing on Saturday afternoon, followed by Christopher Bailey’s last collection as Chief Creative Officer for Burberry on Saturday evening. During his tenure at Burberry, Christopher Bailey ensured the brand remained exciting, relevant and forward-thinking, and has been a major player in creating London’s position as a global capital for creativity and innovation.
(Caroline Rush CBE, Chief Executive, British Fashion Council with Adwoa Aboah, BFC Positive Fashion Ambassador both in the centre, image courtesy of the BFC.)
Adwoa Aboah, BFC Positive Fashion Ambassador, commented to press on the role of LFW becoming more diverse and inclusive to all:
“It is important to note that London is the most diverse capital. Our businesses sell globally, and it is only right that our catwalks, advertising, and creative imagery should reflect that. 2017’s statistics saw us significantly improve our representation of diversity. Our objective is to become the most diverse Fashion Week – we are currently 2nd behind New York City, with all spring 2018 runways more diverse than ever before. In September 2017 London had 31% representation of non-white models on the runway which is above the national UK average representation of 15% but we’d like it to be closer to London’s population average of 40%.
“I also want to be clear that this representation should also look beyond race and include those of all body types, religion, sexuality and gender identification. I myself want to push us all to be committed to ensure that every person out there can eventually identify with someone in our industry that represents THEM. We are so lucky to be in an amazing city that is booming with culture and our fashion industry should be a mirror of what that reality is.”
Caroline Rush CBE, Chief Executive, British Fashion Council added:
“I would like to thank Christopher Bailey, Chief Creative Officer of Burberry for helping us spearhead that change and for continuing to innovate. It is his last show at the helm of Burberry and in true Christopher style he has left us with the Rainbow check, demonstrating that our most recognised global fashion brand is one that leads in diversity and inclusion.”