A sunny but fresh Saturday sets the mood for show visitors on the third day of London Fashion Week. While the heat wave suddenly seemed far behind us, the fashion pack descended on the sites of the day in boots and jackets, adding an extra touch of ambition to the spring-summer looks of 2023. Especially Eudon Choi’s inspired by the south of France catwalkin its signature color block, and SS Daley’s theatrical tribute to Peter Rabbit.
Day two was one of reflection and optimism. It contained some somber moments to honor Queen Elizabeth the Second, such as the minute of silence at Bora Aksu. However, it’s also uplifting because of the buzz of outfits designed for carefree hedonism after a promising year without lockdown. Mark Fast brought the party with an ’80s rave revival, and Edward Crutchley and KNWLS provided club-worthy looks.
The sad news also foreshadowed day three, due to an omission from the schedule: September 17 was scheduled to include the Burberry show, but the house announced the cancellation the previous week as “a mark of respect” for the Queen. . Instead, we’ll have to wait to see Christopher Bailey’s collection on a new date, along with the collection scheduled for Monday, the day of the funeral.
However, many designers had decided to heed the British Fashion Council’s advice that shows could go ahead with respect for “the mood of the nation”, so the first on our program was Eudon Choi.
In the unexpectedly airy space hidden behind a record store in central London, Eudon Choi took his attendees on a world tour. Wanderlust was a common thread in his shows during covid times, and he continued it for Spring Summer 2023 with a trip to the French Riviera. The show was affectionately titled Baiser Sale (Salty Kiss), in honor of love.
There was definitely a touch of romance in the carefree looks, such as broderie anglaise ponchos, rouched bodycon dresses, sailor collar shirts and in the accessories: headscarves and a crochet hat. Like Choi’s magic, appearance balances portability with beauty. There was a sense of lightness to the garments, thanks to clever details such as cut-outs in the seams at the back of shirts, pleated epaulettes on another’s shoulders and flowing tassels that hung from the shoulders of a dress, which the designer says is would help them “dance in the sea breeze”.
Many of the items are designed to be genderless. 1930s beachwear and traditional menswear-inspired oversized blazers in pleasant ocean blue accents, as well as mandarin palazzo pants and Breton striped shirts. The summer line also featured an illustrative print in a nod to French artist Jean Cocteau. All in all, the collection was just the kind of summer hit that we can get started with.
Then it was on to another favorite for wearable occasion wear: Rixo. Founders Henrietta Rix and Orlagh McCloskey started the label eight years ago and its success is unprecedented. In addition to a legion of wedding guests, Margot Robbie and Sandra Bullock have worn the couple’s dresses. Despite the ill effects of the pandemic on fashion, in recent years they have been able to expand into other categories: coats, nightwear and bridal wear, and last week they announced they would be expanding their size range from six to 24.
So for Spring-Summer 2023, the dresses and loose pieces that debuted at London Bridge’s lofty The Hop Exchange were seen across the full spectrum of sizes by models of all ages and body types. The show was called Postcards from Goa, with sparkling sea creatures, tiles and bold flowers.
Proving how festive the new line is, the cast presented it by dancing on a raised stage as if no one was watching classics by Prince and Luther Vandross.
In addition to their beloved high slits and plunging necklines, the new range included a halter neckline with cutouts that was reminiscent of the Kendall Jenner bikini hack that everyone on Instagram jumped on this summer. In addition, there were styles for the more modest, such as a matching midi shirt and button-up shirt. The eclectic range of looks will no doubt enable Rixo to attract even more new fans next year.
The day continued with SS Daley, it was the Liverpudlian’s first show since he won the illustrious LVMH award in June 2022 – and it’s safe to say he didn’t disappoint. The eco-conscious menswear designer is known for his theatrical display cases, regularly casting dancers as models who often perform routines themed with the aesthetics of his collection.
This season’s show, staged at the palatial St Pancras Renaissance Hotel in King’s Cross, began like many others: with a tribute to the Queen. As the lights went out, seven models walked the runway, which surrounded a patch of grass, in black-and-white tailored outfits holding a candle as a gong sounded over the speakers.
However, the mood was quickly lifted as a playful orchestral tune blared and the first glances found their way down the catwalk. The clothes themselves were an eclectic mix: white suits, striped robes, wide-leg corduroy trousers, slogan sweaters and linen two-pieces. Some models carried tote bags filled with fresh flowers, while others carried teddy bears or baskets of eggs.
Over time, a Peter Rabbit theme emerged – the rabbit ears betrayed it, as did the whiskers painted on some models’ faces. But this became apparent when the models stopped halfway through the show and began to recite passages from Beatrix Potter’s books before gently dancing around each other.
The highlight, however, was the casting. SS Daley is one of the few designers to include models of all shapes and sizes in its show so far this season. It’s a refreshing change from the token plus-size casting we often see at LFW. It may go on for a long time.
There was a palpable sense of excitement before Newgen designer Feben’s collection kicked off. In a short space of time, she has already become an industry favorite and counts Beyoncé as a fan. Bow down.
To cheer up a weary crowd of show-goers, the show kicked off with a soundtrack that crushed Zebra Katz with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. The collection was equally eclectic with micro minis, bralettes and flashy beaded fringe dresses appearing alongside high-necked ruffled blouses and white shirt-dress maxis.
Cut in a ruffled bias cut, the designer’s signature bobble dresses were updated in mustard with beaded fringe, floral prints and black for Spring/Summer 2023. Sheer bodycon styles, meanwhile, were printed with newspaper prints and religious images with a twist: Adam and Eve in horns decorated one.
The final walk was met with cheers from the crowd, showing that there is a lot of eagerness to learn what Feben’s next move will be.