I’m not running AW11 show reviews here on LLG, (go read Alex Fury at SHOWStudio for the exemplar of the art), but I am making an exception for Jonathan Saunders, whose show we didn’t just admire, we loved above all others at London Fashion Week just gone.
Sometimes there’s a feeling in the air before a fashion show makes you sit up alert like a meerkat from the moment you take your seat.
In this case, there was the venue, a sweeping, echoing empty office space, hemmed with floor to ceiling windows and filled with huge translucent globes that promised something thoughtful and beautiful. As the show music started, and the first girl entered in a grey blue wool belted suit I leaned forwards to make sure I got every last nuance, every clever cut, every intelligent fold of material.
There was the new length, just past the knee, a sort of late 1930’s silhouette, and flattering but rigorous shapes that women will want to wear. (Look: sleeves!) There was Saunders’ trademark juxtaposition of colour, ravishing prints that called to mind Douanier Rousseau’s jungle riot and beautiful, simple evening wear, all of which combined to show the prospect of a wardrobe for a thoughtful 21st century woman. (Rarer than you might think on the runways of the international collections.)
In this show Jonathan Saunders reached new heights, drawing together his trademark elements from collections past to produce a distillation of his style that became more than the sum of its parts.
Photos by Briony Whitehouse, LLG’s editorial associate, & writer at A Girl, A Style