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LFW SS19 Day 1

22-11-2018   


Richard Malone – Jamie Wei Huang – Nicopanda – i-am-chen – Xu Zhi – Johnstons of Elgin – Xiao Li

From diversity on the catwalk to ethical production to the non-use of fur, London Fashion Week is far from shy when it comes to putting its ideals out there. This season the topic du jour centres around the environment and sustainability. VIN + OMI stamped their signature, innovative style all over St. Pancreas International station last night with a collection bursting with recycled textiles. While opening on-schedule on what was officially Day 1, Richard Malone (pictured below – also a Fashion Studio client), echoed this sentiment with his rainbow-hued designs created from the regenerated nylon Econyl. Showing alongside his mini-dresses and tailored jackets were bags made from recycled tarpaulin the result of a collaboration with the brand Freitag. As the London Fashion Week handbook states: A fashion industry rooted in social and environmental good is not only the modern way forward, but a must for all businesses that want to grow.’

 Words by JoJo Iles

 

Jamie Wei Huang’s SS19 collection is a homage to youth filled with wistfulness and whimsy.

It’s inspired by the story of a girl who goes swimming, misses her bus, and then has to walk home. Consequently, layering is a key component of the show. Many of the looks consist of one-piece swimsuits underneath sheer trousers, tops, or dresses, which could emanate wet clothing or an easy beach cover-up.

A colour palette of cool blues recalls the ocean whilst bubblegum pink recalls girlhood. Stripes are heavily featured and we see ornamental pillows either held by models or attached to the front of clothing- perhaps these represent striped pyjamas and slumber parties? There’s also a mellow sportswear vibe throughout – perhaps the most interesting item is the reinvented gym bag now shrunken down and made in coloured vinyl!

This collection succeeds in straddling the line between nostalgic and modern, fanciful and unaffected, skillfully making us long for a time that’s gone whilst still relishing the moment we’re in.

Words by Sophie Lau

 

Nicopanda’s SS19 offering is an homage to disco and the 90s club scene. Striking neons, bold animal prints, and shimmering sequins make up the aesthetic of a hardcore partier. Streetwear and glamour go hand in hand as we see an equal measure of oversized hoodies and slinky dresses. Matching tracksuits, skin-tight velour, voluminous ruffles, and funky cowboy hats round off this boisterous collection.

Collaborations this season include a 10-piece range of club-ready streetwear made in conjunction with the estate of Divine. These items feature never-before-seen imagery and prints from the archives of the legendary disco singer. Another partnership is that with Merch by Amazon. For SS19, this involves a collection of twelve colourful printed t-shirts featuring artwork by Hilton Dresden, an NYC-based artist and activist. Nicopanda plan on continuing to use this Amazon space to work with young creatives all around the world- undoubtedly, there will be many imaginative and unexpected items in the brand’s future!

Words by Sophie Lau

 

This season, Fashion Scout presented i-am-chen as their coveted Merit Award winner. Selected from hundreds of applicants, i-am-chen founded by the Hong Kong based designer Zhi Chen, follows the likes of Eudon Choi, Phoebe English and David Koma, to gain three seasons of support and brand development.

Images by Tegan Rush

Today she presented her SS19 knitwear collection on the Fashion Scout catwalk. Again in a myriad of hues (bold colour looks big for SS19) in a broad range of textures, this maybe knitwear…but not as you know it – as Chen experiments with gauges to create the finest silk knits with heavier textural yarns. Now in her forth season Chen strives to challenge the capabilities of a variety of knitting machines and it’s this innovative approach that shines through in her designs, some of which you would be hard pushed to recognise as knitwear. The result is elegant, fluid and playful combined with a bold and yet wearable edge.

Words by JoJo Iles

 

Two Temple Place, a late Victorian mansion brimming with architectural details, provided the dramatic backdrop for the Xu Zhi SS19 presentation. With models posed in organised scenes, the historic building add a sense of drama and romance in keeping with Zhi’s poetic inspiration; Emily Dickinson. The American poet like many creative talents, found fame after her death, Xu Zhi designer Xuzhi Chen comments: “Reading her poems, there is a strong sense of romance but also great strength.” Translated into fabric the collection included: exquisite relaxed tailoring, transparent shirting and sweeping floor-length gowns in a palette of pure white, pink oyster and black. Following on from AW18 Xu Zhi reveals his signature embellishments such as all-over tassels and sophisticated floral motifs inspired by Dickinson’s passion for nature.

Words by JoJo Iles

 

Set in the tropical surroundings of the Palm Court at the Wardorf Hilton Hotel Johnstons of Elgin gave us a flavour of summer with a collection that oozed quality and sophistication. Think classic lightweight cashmere woven in the company’s mill in Elgin on the banks of the River Lossie, along with the finest quality cotton, grown by selected areas in the world, that is knitted into a silky, fine fabric that requires fewer seams for a cool, clean look.

The brands’ commitment to sustainability is to be applauded, the Creative Director Alan Scott comments: “It is an honour to return to London Fashion Week for a second season. This unique collection, lovingly made in Scotland, retains our signatures of textile expertise, craft and tailoring for which we have become world renowned, whilst showing the fashion world – for the first time- that the brand is for all seasons.” For Spring/Summer the collection features effortless, relaxed dresses, kimono style cover-ups and slouchy knits alongside structured jackets, trousers and shorts in a palette of lemon, flamingo and aqua combined with classic navy and cream.

Words by JoJo Iles

Xiao Li’s SS19 collection reminds me of lazy days at the seaside. Clothing is mainly striped with sherbet yellow, sky blue, and bright red paired with white, thus mirroring sticks of rock (a seaside staple!) as well as deckchairs. Ruffled shoulders and gathered sleeves add a touch of femininity and shape to the silhouettes, whilst materials resembling bubble wrap (seen in the long overcoat) and iridescent cellophane (seen in the wide-brim sun hats) add textural intrigue. Bags resemble rolled-up towels and a translucent gingham is an ode to summer picnics. A special mention has to go to the thick-strapped utilitarian white harnesses which serve to add strong shoulder pieces to otherwise casual looks, as well as a sense of toughness to an otherwise light and easy collection.

Words by Sophie Lau

Images by Tegan Rush

 

Related articles:

VIN + OMI Open Fashion Week With A Collection High On Innovation and Sustainability

New York Fashion Week SS19 Trend: Neon

 

 

 




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