Style & Then Some

Ones to Watch SS14: London Fashion Week show report

As the fashion world we know and love permanently lives in a state of anticipation, it seems fitting that my last show of this LFW was one with all eyes (and camera lenses) looking to the future. Yes, it’s all very well knowing the shape of our wardrobes one season ahead – but what about the shape of the fashion industry itself? Enter landmark collections from Hannah Williams, Helen Lawrence and Renli Su, Fashion Scout’s Ones to Watch.

Hannah Williams

Winner of the 2013 Muuse prize (amongst others), Hannah William’s offered no limp graduate portfolio; with all the skill and confidence of a designer some collections her senior, this was an impressive debut of sporty silhouette meets Calvin Klein minimalism meets homeless drifter. It envisioned what would happen if we were all dressed in Celine or Stella McCartney, and then the world ended and we were forced to go feral. The glamour, the luxe is there, but shrouded in undone frayed edges and overblown shapes. Plus, versatility is the name of the game for Williams; styling in Burberry-esque pastel shades and white smartened up otherwise fairly relaxed sweatshirt fabrics.

Hannah Williams, 2013, ss14, LFW, ones to watch, minimalism

Helen Lawrence

Lawrence’s entire show was hypnotic – the intensely loud music, the low lighting, and the juxtaposition of the ultra modern catwalk in the home of tradition itself, Freemasons Hall, gave an almost rave-like feel, with hearts pumping in chests from the excessive bass. The designs themselves were elaborate with enough flair in the embroidery, embellishment and fabric usage to show Lawrence’s technical abilities. The palette was complementary, with lurid acid greens, glittering blacks and futuristic silvers featuring throughout, all with Lawrence’s signature scribble pattern marked in sequins.

2013, lfw, helen lawrence, ss14, ones to watch

Renli Su

The most divisive of the three here, Su made a feature of crochet swimming caps that I’m fairly sure won’t take the fashion world by storm (but were certainly a brave statement.) Very much working on a greyscale colour scheme, the collection resembled something you might choose to wear on a long haul flight; comfy cotton grandpa shirts, swinging pea coats, softly cut grey culottes and huge blanket pashminas reminiscent of the Scottish Widow ads all made regular appearances, paired with trainers (joy!). I don’t know whether it was my own LFW exhaustion, the rain outside or the queues already forming outside Freemasons Hall – but Su’s slouchy, bedouin collection seemed right on the mark.

renli

The ubiquitous coconut water and FROW appearances from Susanna Lau and Kate Nash (I know – where’s she been?!), and an impressive past pedigree (Eudon Choi, Peter Pilotto, Pam Hogg) – Ones to Watch sure knows how to pick ’em.

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