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9 Important Things That Happened at London Fashion Week

If you, like me, succumbed to the siren song of a (small) social media break after the circus of New York Fashion Week, then perhaps you, like me, woke up yesterday morning with a very palpable urge to digest EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENED during London Fashion Week in one, big, satisfying meal.

Well sharpen your forks and knives, ladies and gentlemen, because I cooked up a delicious banquet in the form of 10 important takeaways, and it’s basically a fantasy dinner party minus Oprah. Read them below, and please do burp up a comment if you’re feeling appreciative.

1. Christopher Bailey Took His Final Bow for Burberry…

…under a gigantic rainbow of multicolored puffer vests, overcoats, plaid trenches, skirts and blanket ponchos. The pot of gold at the end of this 85-look tribute to gay pride was Burberry’s coinciding donation to youth charities that support LGBTQ+ rights and mental health. “There has never been a more important time to say that in our diversity lies our strength, and our creativity,” Bailey said.

2. J.W. Anderson Went Co-ed…

…with a new combination runway format for his men’s and women’s collections. “We need to go forward in an optimistic way, to change things, to make them exciting again,” said Anderson. “We’re finding that a lot of women are buying men’s — and vice-versa.” Many of the pieces, such as trench dresses and cargo pants, were presented as unisex and styled on both genders alike.

3. Markus Lupfer Took Kirakira Possibilities to a Whole New Level…

…thanks to the models’ crystal-studded scalps. The effect was reminiscent of a classic diamond bracelet, but with different geography: a center part instead of a wrist. It seems easy enough to DIY next time I need to jazz up a “going out” outfit.

4. Christopher Kane Brought Back Novelty Knitwear…

…by trotting out a red sweater emblazoned with the adjective “Special,” and a black one proclaiming “More Joy.” I want them both. I also want the fruits of Kane’s collaboration with the orthopedic footwear brand Z-Coil: a magnificently clunky sneaker with a spiral booster heel that is designed to relieve foot pain. The fact that they were sent down the runway alongside plenty of sex appeal (i.e. translucent lace dresses, body-hugging silhouettes and zippered necklines) only made me love them more — a testament to Kane’s mastery of the elusive domain where sex and chic coexist.

5. Roksanda and Mother of Pearl Made Blanket Statements…

…literally and figuratively. At Roksanda, models clutched blankets over their shoulders like glamorous actresses arising from bed post-coital, except instead of birthday suits they were wearing baby blue, butter yellow and bubblegum pink silk getups. At Mother of Pearl, they held them rolled neatly in the crooks of their elbows — you know, just in case an impromptu picnic opportunity arose.

6. Marques’Almeida Mined Instagram for Ideas…

…further cementing its reputation as a cult brand inspired by the customers themselves. Designers Marta Marques and Paulo Almeida interact with their fans (whom they call #MAgirls) daily on social media, which has earned them a reputation as both inclusive and relevant. “We look at these girls, what they’re posting, what they’re wearing and how they wear it and then just spin it all together,” explained Marques. Some of the girls actually walked in the show, while others were featured in recorded video interviews projected onto the walls of the set.

7. Erdem Gave the Polka Dot Trend a Timely Refresh…

…by transitioning it from supersized 1980s statement tops to elegantly-dotted gauze that covered the models’ faces like 1940s millinery. Isn’t it interesting how sometimes you have to go back in time to take a trend into its next iteration?

8. Isa Arfen Made a Case for Dressing Up Your Jeans and Sweatpants…

…with peplum statement tops, midi dresses, velvet ribbon belts and enormous berets. Man oh man was this collection fun — a dramatically wearable exclamation point at the end of a sentence proclaiming that fashion can be really comfortable and really good simultaneously. It was full of superlative styling ideas, too, like layering a sleeveless dress over a white blouse over denim pants, or popping a summery off-the-shoulder shirt on top of a crewneck sweater. Perfect for transitional weather, don’t you think?

9. Richard Quinn Had the Honor of Entertaining the Queen…

…who made Anna Wintour giggle in the front row. It was Her Majesty’s first-ever fashion show, and she was there to present Quinn with the inaugural Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design, honoring the designer as an emerging fashion talent in the United Kingdom. Here’s evidence of that giggle, by the way:

Feature image by by Yui Mok via Getty Images.

Harling Ross

Harling is a writer and was most recently the Brand Director at Man Repeller.

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