For the inner fashion girl such as myself and even more importantly as a fashion editor, this time of the year really is the best. It’s like Christmas but with lots of cool pieces to look at, street style to ogle at, and a whole lot of fun. But make no mistakes, fashion week is not for the faint hearted or for the weak either. Having a successful fashion week experience requires meticulous planning and observation like know exactly where the light is coming from and how to stay just in the right position for that pow photo that you hope will end up on the evening standard! Lol. I digress.
But seriously a successful take on fashion week requires discipline and planning. It means waking up early to make morning shows whether you’re uber-ing or jumping on the train, making sure to rsvp back to the designers and pr companies so your seat is secure, organizing your invites according to dates and times so you don’t miss important shows and events, social media posts on the go, Having the foresight to pack comfortable shoes in a separate bag so you make it from show to show in one piece. Brushing up on your networking skills and lastly probably the most important, a whole at least one month of eating clean so you fit all your outfits. Now that’s a struggle.
Back to the round up.
First off for me on DAY 1 was of course dressing up in my Sevon Dejana piece and making my way to Victoria House at Bloomsbury square for my first show which was Isabel Manns .
Did a quick interview with the designer backstage and then went off to get some street style images of my outfit, made a quick dash back to see Polish designers, Acephala, Hedda Rook Carlson, Malin Ewen, Diligent and Pat Guzik,
Went off again to do a bit of networking, meet fellow editors and fashion enthusiasts and final made it back to watch the I love 4 seasons show, Fad and Malan Breton to close out the day.
Started off towards midday for me, dressed in this Ejiro Amos Tafiri outfit that literally everyone wanted to get a photo of. I got stopped everywhere from the train station to the shows. It is undeniably a very chic dress and I was mighty glad it was a Nigerian designer getting this attention.
I missed my first show Wen Pan as trains on my route were being delayed because a sudden issue. Like we waited at each station/stop at least 10 mins just with the doors wide open. Considered getting off and going on the road but with traffic on the weekends in London and steep Uber fares, it wasn’t a good idea. Suddenly I found myself wishing so hard for an Okada. Real talk!
Finally, I made it to the Shopyte catwalk show featuring models wearing masks and strutting down the runway in timeless very minimal pieces. Masks explaining the concept of everyone being equal and the clothes further empathizing preservation in these fast fashion times. Loved it.
Then off I went for the fashion outside on the streets. Bumped into Nigerian creatives, International fashion consultant Maryanne Alabi (Mayreejay) and Social Media Influencer and Vlogger Lola Oj looking all shades of gorgeous! Then it was back to Bloomsbury for Riona Treacy’s presentation inspired by summers from her childhood. The collection featured easy to wear pieces in bright colours and soft neutrals.
Next up was was a joint catwalk show Light and Shadow, Esa Liang and Punkrave. Then more shows notably ThisNorthat and then off we went to 180 Strand, the main hub for London Fashion Week to view the exhibitions at the Positive Fashion LFW Café, DiscoveryLab, Check out the VIP Lounge, Instagram room, quick coffee break and of course more street style.
Might I add that asides coffee, drinks and champagne were unlimited all around us, snap jacks, burgers, cakes, brownies, lounges for if you needed to take a nap, fast Wi-Fi, charging points with chargers for all kinds of phone models, a cloak room to drop our coats and all the freebies we had to lug around. Mercedes benz rides for VIP guests, It’s like the organizers thought of everything you could need and made it possible and big ups to that.
Closed out the day at Stories from Arabia featuring Black Pearl, Noura Alabdullah,1 Mor, Samira Hassan and Estillo. One phrase to describe the entire showcase is ‘Arab Money’ and that is all. Lol. I kid. My favs were the silk embellished caftans and one time I spotted a teal dress with lots of feathers and I almost gasped for breath. The venue and Set up. The Hotel Café Royale was very in-tune with the collections and came together for probably the most opulent display of luxury at Fashion week.
Started off late in the evening for me, with my first show being the Atelier Zuhra show at the upscale W Hotel in Soho. Made my way there through very exciting discoveries especially walking through China town to get to the venue. Atelier Zuhra’s SS20 show was an introduction/ presentation of their new Denim collection, featuring lots of Bling. There were canapes and very decadent, far from basic brownies from the popular Brownie god.
Then off I went to The Royal HorseGuards One Whitehall Place for the Aadnevik show inspired by ‘Africa and the spirit of the wilderness’ To say I didn’t feel offended by this would be a blatant lie. Its 2019 come on! According to the designers, “The wilderness of the African continent is a sublime world of beauty and danger where earth is the mother goddess and only animals understand and Obey the earth” Granted, designers are allowed inspiration from where ever but this African girl needed several drinks afterwards.
Started with the Paul costelloe show at The Waldof in Aldwych. The designer’s spring summer showcase paid homage to the 60’s with elegant beehive hair, floral coats and pretty dresses. I had the pleasure of meeting the designer and his wife backstage after the show along with Mayreejay and Teni of StyleTeritory.
Then off I went to the main hub 180 Strand to view the positive fashion Exhibition and discover more and more designers. Of note was Ancuta Sarca at the Sustainability exhibition who makes the chic-est Mules from Recycled Nike shoes. I left feeling so inspired.
Last show of the day was the famed Taiwanese designer Apujan’s SS20 catwalk on schedule at Northumberland Avenue. The collection titled. ‘A thief of Time’ drew inspiration from the designer’s personal obsession with books and his love for reading especially stories about time. So we saw pieces with notes from different eras. From Sneakers embellished with dinosaur teeth, to dresses with fabric mimicking pages from old books, to futuristic telescope-ish eyewear juxtaposed with retro sturdy metal handles. It was like a sci-fi movie but shown with clothes. It exemplified fantasy, time lapses and an imagined complexity. Mighty impressive and befitting to close the night.
Already getting withdrawals as this is officially the last day of London Fashion Week. Woke up wondering what we’ll do with ourselves afterwards! It was by far the best and most fun day. As with all things, it was like the best was saved for last.
Got dressed in a see-through mesh and suede exaggerated sleeve number form Weizdhurm Franklyn. First show for me was at 9 am and the Nigerian in me was mighty surprised I actually made it. All thanks to my sprint in heels from Holborn to the strand. I couldn’t paint a better fashion cliché albeit gorgeous looking one.
The YCH show was up first with strong notes on feminism. The collection is inspired by how the movement is being accepted and oftentimes misunderstood in the modern world. We saw really chic flirty pieces make their way down the runway alongside extreme silhouettes like cinched-in waistlines, loose masculine tailoring, and military-inspired pieces.
Next I was off to the Positive fashion exhibition where I had a little chit chat with Erica Maish, a London based designer who makes one of a kind wearable art from recycled pieces. Her exhibition featured the heavy use of used can openers to create, dresses and separates. Mind blowing to say the least especially when you zoom in to take in the details.
I also had the pleasure to meet up with London based Nigerian designers Ebun Oduwole and Winnie Awa of AndVerv at their presentation which aimed to explore the forgotten women of the avant garde 1960s Nigeria. The presentation evoked a nostalgia of home with very Nigerian elements like the Ayo, a roadside passport studio complete with the rumpled faded white cloth. I also bumped into London Influencer Freddie Harrel who made an appearance as a model in the presentation.
Push button presented a collection with Notes on the future with pieces relevant to the upcoming 22nd century. The collection featured latex above the ankle socks, peplum jackets and dresses in short bulky front variations, a shorts and trousers collab and pieces far from basic in Neon, colour-blocked and neutral tones.
Next was a quick dash to make it in-time to 10 London street which houses the Istituto Marangoni for the Vogue Japan editor Anna Dello Russo’s masterclass ‘A life at Conde Nast’. This was a major highlight of fashion week for me personally as I adore Anna. Her carefree spirit, impeccable style and impressive body of work are Fashion Editor goals if you ask me. Her class hammered on preparedness, discipline, keeping a fresh perspective and having a life outside work to really make it in fashion and stay centered.
In tune with her easy breezy personality, she paused at some point to wonder why no one was asking about her boyfriend Angelo Gioia Lol, and then, literally, a few minutes later, he walks in! and there were screams. We got to ask her questions up-close, hug her, takes loads of selfies and photos one of which ended up on her Instagram. It was a total blast. She wore a dress from the Giuseppe di Morabito pre-spring 2020 collection.
Back at the main hub 180 strand, we saw Bobby Abley’s take on a luxurious urban and undeniably cool summer. Metallics, fur, sportswear and vibrant prints all made their way down the runway. I thought it was very Migos and would love to see them rock some of the pieces.
Next up was DB Berdan,who’s show, a collaboration with Smiley, and named. ‘Self-love’ had a very upbeat tempo and presented an organized chaos as is synonymous with the brand’s focus on eradication of heteronormativity and building a community of people not defined by gender, sex or race.
Last to close out London fashion week was the ONOFF PRESENTS runway where 5 designers Jimmy Paul X Hello Kitty, Daniel Pascal Tanner, Yan Dengu, Rose Danford-Philips and Colin Horgan all showed their collections in a rock and roll, over the top decadent fashion befitting to end London Fashion Week and what to me was the best week this year! I certainly had a very very exciting time!!
Can’t wait to do this again next year!
Love and light
Credits- British Fashion council, London Fashion Week, Chris Yates, Black Pr, PopPr, Fashion Scout, OnOff London, Harrison Dante Jerome and WeareVillage