London Fashion Week for Spring Summer 2020 was in full swing this last week, fresh off the back of an energetic New York extravaganza with many models making the race from Manhattan’s runways to the plane to get to the show on time.
The week went down a little different this year, with some opening select shows to the general public for the first time in history and many designers (including Alexa Chung and Ashley Williams) deciding to show their collections off-schedule.
Normally closed off to the rest of the world, London fashion council opened its doors, offering six public shows over the weekend. For the price of 135 pounds ($245 AUD) anyone could be a part of the fashion spectacle and watch esteemed models walk the catwalk for designers such as Henry Holland, Alexa Chung and self-portrait. Also included in the ticket was panel discussions by industry figures and a fashion exhibition.
Commenting on this decision, British Fashion Council Chief Executive Caroline Rush said;
“We’ve had a really great pick up and interest not only from consumers but also from industry insiders that are curious as to what the experience is going to be”
And it’s received extensive praise from those in the fashion world, including Alice Ferraz of F*hits, a digital influencer platform.
“It’s a very good thing to see. London is always the avant-garde of trends. These shows have to be for the public, not just the press.”
London is the first of the four fashion capitals to make the experimental move to directly invite the public. In New York the only option for fashion lovers is to buy into the “NYFW: The Experience” package which will set you back anywhere between 500 to 2,500 USD.
For this hefty price tag consumers can have the official VIP experience, which includes hair and make-up, canapes in a lounge overlooking the runway and even sit front row at select shows.
The Top Two Designer Runway – Run Down
This season took a softer turn for Victoria Beckham, with a Spring Summer line full of neutrals mixed in with sudden punctuations of lemon yellow, vibrant green and blue hues and fluffy hemmed designs– quite the opposite to the strong tailored look Victoria so often favours. The floating, caramel tonal hues and pops of colour that this season incorporated, allowed for her show’s makeup artist Pat McGrath to take a bold hand to the traditional bold eye liner. Using precise lines at the crease, McGrath used liners in an assortment of colours to flatter each individual model’s eye shape – before adding a soft smudge to the eye for a smoldering look.
As for the rest of the make-up look, the model’s faces were left dewy and bare, with the only other addition being a soft pink lip as to not distract from the art that was the eye drama.
And if we thought Victoria Beckham couldn’t get any more iconic, she went and launched a beauty line in the middle of the hustle and bustle that is London Fashion Week.
The release of Victoria Beckham Beauty preceded what was to be a thoroughly impressive show on the Sunday, allowing for her models to wear not only her designs but also her new beauty products. Co-created with Sarah Creal, who has worked with brands such as Bobbi Brown, Estee Lauder and Tom Ford, this beauty line embraces inclusivity as its philosophy as Beckham made very clear in a behind-the-scenes video shared on the brand’s Instagram.
“When developing all of the makeup, we said that we wanted to be incredibly inclusive, and that’s exactly what we’ve done. We all have completely different skin tones, we’re all completely different colours, completely different ages, and we’re all wearing the same make up.”
The drop included four tonal eyeshadow palettes or “Smokey Eye Bricks”, as well as a cream glitter eyeshadow in four shades and an eye pencil in three different shades.
Not unlike previous years, Burberry featured an iconic line up of models in its Spring Summer show – including Kendal Jenner rocking blonde hair, the Hadid sisters, Somalian breakout model Ugbad Abdi and Irina Shayk.
Not only did Burberry have the best of the best on its runway, they also took a step toward a better future, announcing that their SS20 line certified completely carbon neutral. The show titled, #Evolution, was a step forward not only in stimulating designs but also in the creative directers vision for the impact that Burberry should have on the planet going forward.
A statement by Burberry read;
“We have offset out impacts, such as the flights of guests travelling to London specifically for the show and the build and production of the event, through VSC – certified REDD+ projects which prevent deforestation and conserve tropical rainforests in the Brazilian Amazon,”
This season also marked the third season with Riccardo Tisci captaining the brands creative direction. Opening the show with a neutral palette and caramel suiting, steel grey and black fringe – the line also featured plenty of silk scarves reinvented as belts and halter-necks.
Tisci also brought his familiar taste of streetwear to this seasons line up, presenting relaxed tees, rugby polo shirts and logo emblazoned oversized boxy shirts.
And if we thought that was enough statement for one season, we were wrong as a handful of Handmaid’s Tale-esque headwear filtered through the line-up, suggesting Tisci’s designs had our futures in mind.
But rather iconically this season show had no sign of Nova check in sight, a rather large deviation from the Brands statement look.
Burberry’s SS20 show made it clear to all that with Riccardo Tisci at its helm, we can expect to see high quality, forward thinking garments that reflect the current state of our world and what matters most to the people.
Naomi Campbell For A Cause
On Saturday, the British Fashion Council saved the best for last, with Naomi Campbells charity and iconic show, Fashion for Relief.
Founded by the super model in 2005, the charity has raised money for the Ebola Crisis, Times Up, Hurricane Katrina and many, many more humanitarian causes.
The famously star-studded show was no less sparkly this year with guests such as Anna Wintour, Adwoa Aboah, Alexa Chung, Iris Law and Adut Akech, who Naomi Campbell affectionately called her ‘daughter’ on Instagram earlier in the day.
Clothes for the show were provided by the likes of Gucci, Tomi Kuzumi and Alexander McQueen, and modelled by none other than Naomi herself along with Stella Maxwell, Erin O’Connor and other household names.
But there was a serious message along with the beautiful show: the proceeds from this year’s event were directed towards the Mayor’s Fund for London, a charity which works in partnership with schools, community organisations, other charities and local authorities across all 33 boroughs to support young Londoners and UNICEF.
Urgent calls to action were brought forward including, “60 million children do not have access to education”, and “We can break the cycle together”, – all sprawled across the walls of the building.
The show was closed by Naomi and Adut Akech leading a flock of giggling school children all dressed in Fashion for Relief shirts, for a victory lap around the prestigious catwalk, a symbolic end to a show that wants to bring change to the world.
Naomi’s message? We cannot afford to ignore these world problems any more. It is our responsibility to do something about them.
If nothing else, this London Fashion week has shown us that Londoners and its designers have more than just iconic garments in mind when it comes to showcasing the best of the best at fashion week.
Milan Fashion week is hot on the heels of London, check back with us to get the run down of yet another iconic fashion event.
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