Burberry: Uber wearable Raj and Roll
The Raj and a little rock and roll met at the latest show by Riccardo Tisci for the house of Burberry, with a skilful and sophisticated collection full to the brim with highly wearable clothes.
In easily the best staging in London Fashion Week, Tisci built a mammoth 100-yard-long mirrored catwalk set underneath the giant glass ceiling of the Olympia exhibition space. At its center, high above the audience of 1,000, the Labèque sisters performed on two Steinways facing each other across the runway.
Tisci opened the action by concentrating on Burberry’s central DNA, the trench coat, in multiple variations. White canvas frayed just so, finished with faux fur arms, cut as a super heroine duster, trimmed with sturdy padded leather, or cut with semi-sheer silk lower halves.
In a co-ed show Tisci also worked the classic plaid, with beige bowling alley jerkins, plaid duffle coats, or madras plaid shirts for guys. Ricardo even dreamed up an eye-boggling triple-plaid shirt cut into three vertical panels, each with its own neckline. Though the stand-out tartan moment was a fabulous three-piece suit on uber model Joan Smalls, cut with leggings, micro gilet and hacking jacket.
“India, where I spent some wonderful times, and Bethnal Green where I lived when I was a student in London,” said Tisci of his inspiration, after being embraced by Cate Blanchett and Naomi Campbell.
“You’re a genius!” cooed Blanchett, the Oscar winner dressed in an all-black cape coat from Tisci’s debut season.
It was Tisci’s Indian moment, seen in coats, suits and dresses finished with organza trim, side shards and attachments or golden collars, and above all in great combinations of madras checks – used in shirts, picnic frocks, bra tops, skirts and in cocktail dresses held together with gold chains.
Throughout, the sister pianists drove the drama with pounding music, playing selections from Phunkjump & Camille Jones, or Butch.
The Italian designer even segued into the ultimate British sport – rugby – with a five-a-side of bright striped tops, and sent out some powerful all-black combinations for night. Before a great finale, which climaxed with a silver sequined modish maharani.
All told, perhaps, so far in his tenure Tisci has not quite hit the heights of creativity he achieved in his previous job at Givenchy. However, this was a catwalk crammed full of enticing fashion, sure to keep business ticking over nicely at Britain’s one real mega luxury brand. Make no mistake about that, Tisci is finding his groove at Burberry.
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