Mulberry's botanical London Fashion Week show
It was a quiet and sunny start to London Fashion Week this morning, which set the tone perfectly for Mulberry's hotly anticipated AW13 show. Held in the beautiful bowels of Claridges Hotel Ballroom (the doorway of which was covered in towering blue and white blossoms) the collection drew its usual A List fashion crowd; Alexa Chung sat alongside Lana Del Ray on one side of the FROW whilst Vogue editors Alexadra Shulman and Anna Wintour were perched on the other. After providing us with a sneak peek behind the scenes via their Facebook page, we knew two things before the first model appeared on the catwalk - that the show would most likely feature butterflies and definitely a poodle or two!)
The opening look - a strong tweed coat featuring a cream fur collar and contrasting sleeves worn over leafy cropped trousers styled with heeled loafers, leather gloves and a navy Bayswater - summed up the collection in one fell swoop; this was luxurious English countryside with a playful edge. Every look blended familiar Mulberry touches with whimsical flair - buttery soft leather capes were teamed with matching leather pleated skater skirts and skin tight leather gloves, woodland prints married botanical patterns, butterflies adorned handbags, heritage checks were blown out of proportion and covered in sequins. Each outfit said, "I have a British sense of style and I don't take myself too seriously".
Cropped trousers could be seen on almost every other look, appearing in pastel pink and burgundy as well as print, and pleated skater skirts also proved to be a popular shape with Mulberry's Creative Director Emma Hill (although I won't be wearing them together any time soon Emma, no matter how hard you try to make it work). As with a number shows this season, the colour palette consisted of navy, navy and more navy, with the occasional burst of cornflower blue, orange, jade and mustard thrown in to spice up blocked heels, mohair knits, shearling trims and fur collars. Cream too played its part, looking at its best when worn head-to-toe.
Evening wear stepped up a notch with luxe metallic burgundy tunics and a black fisherman's coat with embroidered bell sleeves worn by model of the moment, Cara Delevingne (I found myself enamoured by the sleeves on every piece in the collection - whether they were billowing, stiff three quarter length or capped, they were simply beautiful). Oversized checks were given the sequin treatment, transforming them from day to night in an instant, however for me, it was the sophistication of the outerwear and everyday pieces that really gave me the butterflies.
Last but certainly not least, were the bags - almost every model carried one, from the iconic Bayswater to newest members of the family, the Sussex and the Willow tote. I wonder which celeb will be first to get their hands on one?