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Image Credit London Fashion Week and Featured Designers
The June 2022 London Menswear shows spaced over three days, afforded us an awesome sneak peek as to what we can expect in our department stores, boutiques and online in the coming season. Heavyweights Tiger of Sweden, Ahluwalia and Labrum London were amongst the trend setters, supported by brands like Quasimi with their striking avant-garde pieces, Kingwen’s dreamy fantasy frocks and AGR’s trademark vibrant and cheery rainbow fashion. We spotted a number of super exciting trends, not least the overriding one – genderless collections, which so make sense, especially as LGBT Pride month is another key event in the month of June.
An entire spectrum of hats – from artfully enormous, draped turbans to the perennial sporty caps – were to be seen, not just in the collections themselves but also in the street fashion of dressed-to-kill fashionistas. As to be expected for the Spring Summer collections, colour was a key player, most notably the sunny shades of yellow, chartreuse and lime green. Although this event focused predominantly on menswear, various fabulous womenswear collections also sneaked into the mix, for example the classically tailored and restrained Seventyfive, Kingwen’s floaty party frocks and Lea Nyland Studio’s ethereal knitted and textured pieces. And talking of knits, Ireland’s Robyn Lynch stunned with her collection of avant-garde knitted creations – a definite highlight of the week.
To get you into the swing of things, let’s fast forward to the incredible collections of the students of Ravenbourne University London! No better place to kick off, these creations are inspired, forward-thinking and gender-inclusive. Out with the old, in with the new, welcome Spring Summer 2023! Read on and eat your heart out on our personal picks from the shows.
Watch the Ravensbourne University London’s video here:
ALL FINE AND DANDY?
Foday Dumbuya of Labrum London, a British designer from Sierra Leone, opened London Menswear with his extraordinary collection, Freedom of Movement, “the idea of a borderless society, where merging of cultures would coexist with constant migration… and to celebrate different cultures living under one roof”. A tailoring specialist, Dumbuya’s collection is one full of fun and dandy swagger but comes with a definite socio-political message in the light of the current issues of migration.
SWEAT IT OUT – WHERE STREET MEETS SPORT
Recent winner of the famous Woolmark prize as well as the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design, dancer and designer Saul Nash did for Spring Summer 2023what he does best: sportswear pieces that make you jump for joy. Contrasting contours, colour blocking and chic elegance are the hallmarks of these comfy pieces that are far too glam for the tennis court and gym!
AGR and AHLUWAHLIA
Kaleidoscopic fashion has never looked more modern. Grungy and gritty, striped, distressed and acid-treated, AGR’s characteristically cheerful and vibrant collection of rainbow-inspired pieces will bring oodles of joy to any wardrobe. Similarly, Priya Ahluwalia’s collection for Ahluwalia was one of the standout highlights of the Spring Summer collections, where eclectic knits and prints worked their magic together to create ensembles that are forward-thinking and boundary-pushing. Print on print on pattern, with a yet another patterned knit in the mix … bring it on, the more the merrier! These are wholesome and crafty, bright and joyful, authentic and real, and a fabulous nod to the sunny African continent.
SLIP-STITCH AND TEXTURED
ROBYN LYNCH and LEA NYLAND STUDIO
Ireland’s Dublin-born menswear designer who has in the past worked with Phoebe English, Robyn Lynch, wowed with an exquisite collection of knitted cape-like sweaters, textured vests and chunky cabled sleeveless tops in inspired shades, most notably the shade of the season, sunshine yellow. London-based Danish/Norwegian designer Lea Nyland Studio also offered a very tactile women’s collection, with superfine transparent knitted dresses, strappy collage dresses and cutouts (another trend of the season), again favouring the delicious colour yellow.
THE ART OF TAILORING
ABAGA VELLI, CARLOTA BARRERA, SEVENTYFIVE and QUASISMI
Every season boasts exquisite tailoring and expert craftsmanship, but every so often classic tailoring gets a novel twist – and Abaga Velli’s collection is a case in point. A super clean-cut navy coat over white wide-legged trousers looks unbelievably covetable, and a two-toned classic denim jacket is the ‘must-have’ item of the season. We adore the whimsical print on Carlota Barrerra’s washed-out blue tailored suit, and the edible peppermint shade of the shorts-suit is just divine! Seventyfive’s super-sleek, minimalist tailoring is as delightful as their printed, slightly crumpled pattern-on-pattern cropped suit. Quasimi pushed the boundaries of clever tailoring even further, with a flamboyant bow at the hem of a pair of classic pleated camel trousers.
RESORT TO OFFICE
TIGER OF SWEDEN and PERTE D’EGO
Known equally for design, cut, shape, quality and with the focus squarely on individuality since 1903, stalwart of the Stockholm fashion industry, Tiger of Sweden, showed yet again why it is so highly regarded in fashion circles. From leisurely tie-dyed shirts to asymmetric little black dresses, retro-inspired flairs to short trenches, this is a collection that will whisk you from your exotic holidays straight back to the office. Perte D’Ego is a New Delhi-based design house focusing on ethically-produced, one-off creations, which have one goal in mind: to make one book that holiday to the Seychelles, pronto!
DREAM ON, LIFE’S A CABARET!
KINGWEN, TREDDENICK, SANS PENG, BRANDON CHOI and AGNE KUZMICKAITE
Kingwen’s founder, Qingwen Huang graduated from Central Saint Martins and has worked with extraordinary brands like Simone Rocha, Thom Browne and Cartier and has been featured in style bible Vogue Italia. We absolutely adore her whimsical, flouncy, romantic fantasy frocks! And talking about fantasy frocks, Treddenick’s salad-green frilly and frothy tulle creations are something else! We love Sans Peng’s fur-edged bustiere and Brandon Choi’s collection is so theatrical, dahhhhling, it’s not true! We particularly adore Brandon Choi’s floor sweeping, echru-edged, pyramid-shaped strapless ballgown. Lithuanian brand Agne Kuzmickaite’s leopard and butterfly textile and design combos are beyond glamorous, think Dita von Teese!
Watch Kingwen’s video here:
Goodbye London Menswear, you leave us gagging for more! Until next time.