The current breed of designers that are dominating London schedule are usually the ones found on the Sunday or Monday of the fashion week schedule. Christopher Kane, Erdem, Peter Pilotto, Mary Katrantzou are all in the same boat—they are the prospering young that helped reignite British fashion. Many of them have been pigeonholed, namely the Peter Pilotto boys and Mary Katrantzou. Both print masters—that very title worked against their personal mindsets in the design of their collections. Mary didn’t want to be known for her vibrant prints; one season she threw a spanner in the works with a collection comprised of tonal pieces and surface decoration. Likewise, the Peter Pilotto boys have been simply branded “print designers”. Eager to break away from that, their fall collection pioneered new beginnings for them, where print wasn’t the whole show.
Offering examples of their textural prowess, Peter Pilotto and his partner Christopher de Vos presented jacquards, velvets, wools as well as slinky laces and satins. The opening look consisted of a long, mohair jacquard coat patterned with the embossed details that resembled a starry night. Interesting, the boys opted against the clickbait-worthy Aurora Borealis; the print could’ve easily emblazoned a gorgeous gown but instead they focused on 70s colourisation and tactility. Seen in a few looks were skiing motifs, which punctuated a number of other collections during the season.
I pictured a Swedish folk band crowded around a campfire, yarning and singing songs well into the night. I’m sure they intended for a well-heeled, well-travelled businesswoman who buys into a dream and holidays in five star resorts in Nordic sites, with views of the Aurora Borealis. It’s always been about the dream with these too. By imbuing travel inspirations in their work, Pilotto and de Vos inevitably enrich the viewer experience.
Fantasy is a great element to fashion shows. That’s why I still believe in fashion shows and presentations. There’s no other engaging way forward that I’ve come across. In the case of this design duo, the show offers the chance to witness beautifully crafted clothing in a bright environment against a suitable soundscape that builds the dreamworld that is high fashion. These clothes were punchy but not standoffish—the Neiman Marcus or Ikram shopper in America, I think, will be particularly chuffed with what’s on offer here.
Many other critics alluded to better things on the horizons in their reviews, insinuating a slump in recent times. I for one find it difficult to pick a collection that hasn’t imparted a feeling other than warmth or positivity. But for me it’s like looking at a starry night’s sky—it never tires.
Photo Credit: voguerunway.com