Spring/Summer 2015 Anya Hindmarch

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Was the show earth moving? Well yes, quite literally. Anya Hindmarch is a fan of staging a spectacle and this season she outdid herself. The seating at the show was on revolving floors to give editors a 360 degree of her spring/summer 2015 show. As the earth (floor) started moving and we contemplated that yes, this could be it, fashion week had been struck by an earthquake, out filed models in heels and white boiler suits carrying Anya’s new It bags.

This season’s theme was school girl customisation, Anya’s childhood habit for sticking stickers on her school books was immortalised in leather; has accessorising your bag with stickers it seems have knocked the fluffy bag bug off the trend top spot next season?

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Spring/Summer 2015 DSquared2

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Since they were baby twins looking at fashion magazines, Dean and Dan Caten have always loved a pose. The sculpted volumes of their new collection got them free-associating all over the place. When Elisabeth Erm held her position in a pair of rounded, cropped pants cut from silk raffia, her legs reminded Dean of a centaur’s.

That fabric, woven in vibrant color-blocks that were reminiscent of Sonia Delaunay’s textiles, was a key component of the Catens’ new collection. So were allover beadwork—on sweatshirts, slouchy pants, and thigh-high boots—and torrents of frothy plissé. As lighthearted as that sounds, it pointed to a new seriousness of purpose for the twins. They’ve always been great technicians, but that skill has often been obscured by their showmanship. Their presentation was as large-scaled as ever, it was set against the neutral backdrop of a New York artist’s loft, a somewhat higher-brow location than the B-movie scenarios—women’s prisons or Hollywood lunatic asylums—they’ve been drawn to in the past. There was a new emphasis on form and craft. Leather bonded to jersey was cut into light, athletic little shell tops. Even T-shirts were double-faced to give them a little more structure.

Which is not to say the Catens have turned their backs on the style that has built them an empire, its latest outpost the store that just opened on Rodeo Drive. The collection was actually shaped by a running high-low dialogue. So a floor-length skirt of scalloped plissé was shown with a cropped denim jacket, the same billowing piece was cut from the Delaunay-patterned silk raffia and paired with a cropped white tee. And a peplum-ed jacket in gold leather topped a pair of the boyfriend jeans that are a Caten classic. They love this idea—pants slouched to reveal branded briefs “borrowed from a boyfriend.”

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The Ballet Pump

THE ballet pump – a starlet classic which we all have at the back of our wardrobes – hasn’t had an easy ride over the past few years. Deemed polite to the point of prissy, the staple shoe developed a bad rep after the high street was flooded with every variation imaginable a decade ago… the patent, gingham or leg-toning adaptations during the Noughties.

Now is the time to switch your attitude to the humble ballet slipper. The simplest of all-day, everyday shoes has made a comeback thanks to Celine: Phoebe Philo showed a stretchy, pliable style on the spring/summer 2015 catwalk. The key to the new-look ballet pump is an elegant almond-shaped toe (rather than round) – try Lanvin, A.P.C or French Sole. Pick a punchy red or tan, matte leather – extra marks go for authentic balletic details such as ribbon ties or blush silk, which works particularly well with suiting, where a box-fresh white trainer now feels a little obvious.


Over on the red carpet, the ballet shoe is elbowing the lace-up stiletto out of the limelight: Karlie Kloss made a very convincing case for the uber-classic Chanel pump at the Tribeca Film Festival last week, pairing hers with a little tweed dress. They look chic, in a sprightly sort-of way, don’t they?

Maybe heels are simply feeling like too much hard work, or post-normcore there’s enough irony to dressing safe to make it appealing now. Either way, the modest ballet pump feels refreshingly feminine for summer 2015 – which is something we shouldn’t be afraid of.

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Spring/Summer 2015 JW Anderson


CONSIDERING he’s now at the helm of luxury leather house Loewe, it’s perhaps not surprising that JW Anderson – now fully-fledged and LVMH-inducted – used the fabric generously in his own eponymous collection, one that was surely his strongest yet and beautifully cemented the JW Anderson brand.

“We were looking at our DNA, thinking what things made it and how to own them,” explained the designer backstage, citing leather in particular as being one of them. Proof – as if any were needed – that he and Loewe should have a long and happy friendship.

But here he said that he was trying to refine it, take it to a new level – which is a hallmark of this designer, always ready to try something in an unexpected way and always delivering on the promises. Remember last season’s corduroy evening gowns?

But aside from the leather, he cited surrealism, workwear, psychedelic, suspended architecture, “a lot of chopping” and the idea of a voyeur as all informing his direction – or rather streamlining his identity – this season. The latter reference via huge floppy leather fisherman hats that simultaneously shrouded and framed the models’ faces through their folds, revealing a jigsaw piece at the neck. “I like the idea of having to look up into the woman,” he said.

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The surrealism came through the layering of seemingly separate garments – leather midriffs that affixed themselves throughout – and densely knitted dresses that, described Anderson, looked like “wallpaper, something domestic”. And it’s an area we’ve seen him subvert before. “These are meant to look like towelling,” he said, gesturing to the line-up board and the series of cropped and midriff-baring jackets and miniskirts, their blue hems piped in white just like you might find in a bathroom. Again, surreal. And surprisingly seductive.

It was industrial as we know from him, austere but with considered and restrained moments of femininity with brightly-coloured camisoles twisted at the front atop slinky knits, and blushes here and there of baby pink. Huge buttons were details to note, oversized rivets punctuating collars and lapel-shaped cut-outs exposing flesh.

“It’s a bit like suspended architecture,” he referred to looks backstage, adding that this season was the first time he’d done “serious heels” on the shoes – a literal incarnation of dragging ones heels, all clumpy and vaguely-clog-inspired as they were.

JW has many fashion fans – not least in the shape of LVMH of course – but those sitting front row and beyond were left feeling suitably well fed for spring/summer 2015.

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