Let your chic freak flag fly


London designers have always let their freak flags fly with free-spirited and often eccentric styles. At the same time, Britain’s creatives excel at tailoring traditional clothing, like the ubiquitous trench coat. This season, they showed everything from gargantuan dresses and feathered confections to kink-inspired styles. Here’s a look at all the sober, sexy and stimulating trends from the most unpredictable of fashion cities.

Precious plumage

Time to peacock. Extravagant evening gowns were feathered at Mary Katrantzou and JW Anderson (which used faux fluff), while Toga and Natasha Zinko feminized their oversize jackets with bird-like cover. Ryan Lo’s pastel lace dress took flight with the addition of fluttering avian accents.

Stitched up

Designers pieced it together with crafty patchworks and appliques. Alexa Chung knitted a cool look with matching sweater and scarf over leather pants. Ashley Williams’ equine coat featured floral horse heads sewn over an animal print background. As for Matty Bovan, he needled a floral and plaid pastiche.

Outsize appeal

“Go big or go home” could be the motto for today’s statement dresses. Molly Goddard closed her show with an enormous fuchsia number. Ashish made the biggest babydoll frock ever and encrusted it with sequins. Richard Quinn wrapped up his floral sequin number in a ginormous bow. Talk about looming large.

Trench warfare

The trench is so much more than a practical British coat; it’s an outerwear icon. Burberry is an obvious go-to for the classic khaki version, and this season the house colorblocked and embellished its versions. Rejina Pyo unveiled hers in immaculate white, while Simone Rocha made it clear that when it comes to this style, two is better than one.

Berry beautiful

Red alert! Ruby and scarlet are the colors that fired up London runways. Preen picked the perfect shade of cherry for this ruffled frock. Christopher Kane cut this flirtatious crimson dress short and Emilia Wickstead went with the “cardinal” rule that more is more — think delicious apple head to toe.

Cute kink


Christopher Kane somehow made his fetish-inspired styles look adorable. The cheeky British designer explored erotic subcultures by sending out dresses with pictures of rubber gloves and the word “Rubberist” printed on the front, balloon-emblazoned pieces inscribed with “Looner” and transparent liquid-filled bags. He kept the looks sophisticated by using dressy fabrics and pops of bright color. Nice and naughty.

Wet and wild

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It rains a lot in England, so when Riccardo Tisci focused on “contrast in British culture and weather” for his “Tempest” Burberry show, it made sense that the hair would look damp. Guido Palau created “a very intricate gelled look” that also borrowed from youth culture with Redken hairspray and gel. Let it pour.

The real Victoria

Anton Denisov

Victoria Beckham launched her YouTube channel at her fall 2019 show in London’s Tate Britain. The channel features a continuous look into the inner workings of her life as a fashion designer and working mom, and will showcase her upcoming beauty collection. Best of all, her runway shows will be livestreamed.

By Johannah Masters

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