Spikjersenspijkers.jpgA rather damp but still immaculately turned-out London Fashion Week crowd assembled at Freemason's Hall in Covent Garden this afternoon for Spijkers en Spijkers' autumn/winter 2012 catwalk presentation with Vauxhall Fashion Scout. The Dutch duo brought a 'warm colour palette to the cooler season' inspired by their admiration for 'Birds of Paradise'; the translation of a Dutch expression used to refer to eccentric, colourful people.

The 'Bird of Paradise' uppermost in the designers' thoughts was in this case Edie Bovier Beale; a socialite and aristocrat born in 1917. 'Little Edie' was the aunt and cousin of Jackie Kennedy Onassis aka Jackie O, herself a signifiant fashion muse. Along with her mother Ewing Bouvier Beale, she was a highlight of the New York social scene.

This eclectic character was conveyed in the show through bright pops of colour - including the wide plastic Alice bands worn on the models' heads - perky, uniform wig-like hair and plenty of 1920s and 30s-style draping and embellishment in the dresses. The choice of colours and fabrics used in the collection also referenced the rich, social whirl of its muses. The look was completed with ostrich feathers and other exotic embellishments. 

While the silhouettes of the dresses were mostly cut in a sharp, tailored style there was plenty of fun and flirty girlishness in the mix with low open-backed dresses, pretty feminine scalloping, feather trim and colourful print silks. Most of all, the use of colour gave a cheerful feel to the clothes, with plenty of lime greens, mulberry purples and bold burnt orange accents.