Mary Katrantzou's photographic turn at LFW
The show may have run over 45 minutes late due to "lost models" (see: smoking behind the bike sheds) but after seeing the latest collection from British designer Mary Katrantzou, we think you'll agree that it was well worth the wait; Katrantzou offerings for AW13 might just be her best yet.
Inspired by the black and white photography of Edward Steichen, the Central St Martins graduate literally set the scene in her prints - dresses were adorned with staircases, shadowy forests, desolate streets, and haunting landscapes featuring cherry blossoms and waterfalls. As usual, the Queen of graphics created sculptural pieces that bought new meaning to the words 'experimental silhoutte' - this wasn't a case of fashion imitating art, this WAS art in its truest form. This slight change in direction for Katrantzou went hand in hand with a new, muted colour palette, stormy and grey like the London sky, which caused a dramatic effect when combined with architectural construction of the clothes themselves. No two pieces were alike, yet everything felt connected by the imagery, some abstract and some clear as day.
The collection opened with a host of dresses, some asymetically cut along the hem and delicately draped around the body, others detailing voluminous folding and manipulated proportions. Like watercolour, pale blues began to bleed into the photographs, then in came the trousers, the blazers and the long line dresses. As the show gathered pace, the subtle layering gave way to origami-like folding - dresses, trousers and pencil skirts became more complex, images more vivid and colourful - then just as quickly the tone changed again with intricate patterns embossed on black leather.
Katrantzou ended her phenomenal run in a flurry of modern metallics and stunning printed chiffon dresses which encouraged the images to come to life as the models floated down the runway, leaving both the A Listers on the front row and her adoring fans on Twitter speechless. By evolving her aesthetic and moving forward from the bold and brights by which she made her name, this designer has got the attention of fashion heavyweights around the world - we can't wait to see where her creations take her.