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LFW AW19 DAY 3 
The Trends to Know

18th  February 2019

by Navaz Batliwalla 'DisneyRollerGirl'

While London may be feted for its offbeat eccentricity, next season it’s offering equal measures of commercial brilliance. Some might blame Brexit; others might just say our designers have learnt to embrace the business requirements of an industry that contributes £32 billion to the UK GDP.

PREEN

What this looked like on the catwalk was a hefty dose of gentlewoman tailoring, louche dresses, tactile knits, plus the odd unexpected accessory. (Tip: the bright opaque tight returns for AW19!) Margaret Howell is a stalwart of the shows and serves as a no-nonsense palate cleanser for anyone who has OD-ed on outré maximalism. Her show was a styling masterclass in how to work a cord blazer, belted paper bag pants and white shirt with just the right amount of undone nonchalance. Victoria Beckham has similarly relaxed into a groove of polished blazers, sensible-with-a sexy-undertone knits and sharp-collared shirts that have equal appeal to the corporate or creative woman of style.

MARGARET HOWELL. CREDIT: THEUPCOMING.CO.UK

MATTY BOVAN. CREDIT: MATTY BOVAN PRESS TEAM

VICTORIA BECKHAM

And then there’s Burberry. Completely revamped under the eye of former club kid, Riccardo Tisci, his strategy is to explore dualities, splitting the show into a youthful ‘hypebeast’ section on street clubwear versus grown-up luxe. It all taps into the cultural zeitgeist of optimism, activism, and a ‘music is the answer’ approach, a vibe that was echoed earlier in the day by Preen. Shown in an out-of-the-way warehouse, Preen duo Thea Breganza and Justin Thornton hired the legendary Ben Kelly of Hacienda club design fame to create their set, an homage to that graphic temple of 80s worship. Masters of juxtaposition, they gathered the threads of community spirit, folk festivals and the culture of dance and translated them into romantic floral folk wear, sequin dresses, and utility-cool outerwear. Accessories appeared as color block fishnet tights and clogs. Well, why not?

PREEN. CREDIT: ARMANDO GRILLO_- GORUNWAY.COM

Culture is a huge component of Fashion Week, and it’s a shame to cover the London shows without indulging in an extracurricular activity (or three). Happily, there’s no shortage of culture candy on offer. The Wales Bonner show (Grace Wales Bonner’s first co-ed show) took place in the Serpentine Gallery, where her very own multi-sensory installation, ‘A Time for New Dreams’ is currently showing. A study of mysticism and the occult, there were hints of voodoo references in her collection, with kaori shell brooches and feather trims adorning her non gender-specific pieces.

GRACE WALES BONNER 

Of course, no one should miss the magnificent ‘Dior: Designer of Dreams’ exhibition at the V&A, so popular that new tickets have been released for early and late weekend slots in March. First shown in Paris, the London show has a new ‘Dior in Britain’ section, boasting Princess Margaret’s 21st birthday Dior gown displayed on a Proportion London bust form. Will it inspire a wave of full-skirted ‘New Look’ silhouettes next year? Very possibly.

DIOR: DESIGNER OF DREAMS. CREDIT: VICTORIA AND ALBERT MUSEUM 

Check back tomorrow for DisneyRollerGirl's exclusive insight and photographs from LFW AW19 day 4.

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