A Scottish Bird’s Eye View of LFW

Words and Images by Laura McKinnon for shareitwearit

And with that, I was unceremoniously roused from my nap and forced to draw myself back into the world of the “Megabus” – otherwise dubbed as the “Megahell”. As I detached myself and my drool from the poor, unsuspecting passenger that had the misfortune to sit next to me, I noticed that an abundance of “Pret-A-Mangers” had begun to pass the windows – which could only mean one thing.


I had indeed survived the horrific eight hour bus journey to London. It was not long before we shuffled off the bus and into Victoria coach station, ladened with luggage and I began on my journey of shoes, bags, and clothes as for this season, I was fortunate enough to shoot London Fashion Week on behalf of shareitwearit.

To understand London Fashion Week from a photographer’s perspective, the job in itself is physically challenging on a level that makes any other runway event (apart from perhaps Milan and the other fashion weeks) look like mincemeat. We average about three hours of sleep a day, eat once a day and then pack into the press pit like a tin of sardines for the rest of it – all in the name of fashion. It sounds like a gruelling task, but in the end, it is every bit worth it when we catch our first frame of an ethereal model floating down the runway in a beautiful haute couture gown and fall in love with every aspect of our job all over again.

So with big, fresh eyes, I plonked myself down in the press pit, greeting a few old friends and snuggled down for my first show of the season and could not help but smile to myself when the opening peals of “Ghostbusters” by Ray Parker Junior blasted from behind the runway.

Autumn and Winter Trends for 2012/2013
With a jammed-packed schedule of catwalks, I honestly had no idea what to anticipate. The previous season in September had marked the return of the brighter and bolder colours that have been somewhat absent in the recent years gone past as well as bigger accessories including avant-garde feather millinery. Another popular trend that had emerged was the ghost of the refined woman, empowered through vibrant yellows, reds as well as much to my horror, sportswear. Following the return of fruitful colours, I was optimistic about this season and needless to say, it did not disappoint.

So when I say tribal, I’m going to guess the first imagery that springs to mind is vibrant cerulean and burning tangerine, set over the plains of Botswana, sweltering heat and thin fabrics – right?


This season of London Fashion Week, fashion collective House of Evolution made sure to pay homage to our Asian brothers and sisters in the colder climates, sourcing inspiration from countries such as Mongolia. Layering remained popular as a trend, building on a neutral white and introducing colour pops of blue and orange. Earthy detail was drawn from the ground, replicating root and branch like patterns as well as leafy forage which was used to illustrate and set this particular collection.

Biology enthusiast and French label, Florian Jayet, also made sure to contribute to the tribal theme, this time portraying elfin styled girls in heavier, structured dresses, complete with ruffling, folding and well-designed bodies. As opposed to House of Evolution, Florian Jayet opted to embrace patterns from the Aztec period, and applied print, comparable to tribal costume jewellery onto significant portions of the garments. This collection focused on more understated colours, however, blue sprang up again as a predominant colour throughout the runway.

It has been due a long time – print is back and it is most definitely here to stay. That means it is time to ditch the Cath Kidston and move onto the bigger and bolder. Print was fairly dominant through the majority of catwalks this season, however, surrealism art fanatics alike will kill in cold blood for Leutton Postle’s brilliantly bizarre collection. Using expressive blues, yellows and oranges, the house has produced prints that are reminiscent of Pablo Picasso’s iconic canvases as well as clashing juxtapositions of drooping shapes, not dissimilar to Salvador Dali’s “The Persistence of Memory”. Leutton Postle also saw fit to draw in more texture this season, following the winter trend of layering, using a collage-type effect to build up garments.

Spijkers en Spijkers jumped onto the print bandwagon this year, bringing us a blast from the past with 70s inspired gaudy prints, using empowering traditional silhouettes, bringing hemlines down and tailoring clothes to fit the hourglass figure. Once again, orange presented itself as a favoured colour of the runway and was teamed up with chocolate browns, greys and yellows that screamed something about a ballroom blitz.

For those of you who lead lives that do not allow for quite so an exuberant choice of clothing, fear not as monochrome was seen to be making a return once again this season. Carlotta Actis Barone sourced somewhat unusual inspiration from the past, taking her inspiration from the Holocaust of the World War Two. The catwalk itself was of theatrical proportions, with models shuffling down the runway at a pace not unlike the zombies seen on “The Walking Dead”, wading on through an eerie fog. The house looked to enhance strong womanly silhouettes, with sharp fitting torsos and big, puffed out skirts. There was a hint of metallic present throughout the runway, however, very much played down in comparison to earlier seasons.
House of Evolution also contributed to a monochromatic theme, dressing models in somewhat androgynous outfits as well as simple elegant black gowns. Lako Bukia contributed an element of metallic this season, opting to dress futuristic styled models in steel greys and black, ending the runway with a rather appropriate explosion.

If the return of colour was not already increasingly apparent, Fam Irvoll made sure to make an impact with her new collection, “Monster Mash”, mixing jazzy purples and pastel hues with wonderfully childish and outlandish monster-inspired shoulder pads, skirts, creepers and chunky cartoonish bags. Fam Irvoll aimed to embrace the inner child, providing without a doubt the most playful runway of the season.
In a more understated bid to bring colour back onto the runway, designer MATH Collective contributed beautiful, slightly geometric silk pieces, splashed with colour pops of mustard yellow, midnight blue and poppy red. Elements of the runway were suggestive of an influence of sportswear, however, MATH kept the sophistication by applying a structured cut to the textiles used.

Avant Garde/Costume
As with every season on London Fashion Week, I always look forward to the plain zany and wacky creations designed by true pioneers of fashion. Scottish designers came out top this season, with Obscure Couture and Pam Hogg proving that there is definitely something more than just tartan and wool north of the border.
Pam Hogg brought an eclectic mix of material to the stage including latex, fur and chiffon and unbelievably managed to cover just about every trend this season. The show was kicked off by sending models down the runway, made from head to toe like Russian Babushka dolls, followed by slightly more sinister and revealing monochromatic body suits. For the finale, the audience were greeted by glamorous gowns of pale pastel hues. By the end of the show, it was absolutely no surprise that press and buyers a like had come from far and wide to catch a glimpse of this simply astounding exhibition of work.
Obscure Couture released their brand new collection “The Lithium Party”, surprising audiences with an entirely different, yet equally as impacting theme. This season saw the duo take a step away from neon and embrace a more refined and mature approach, mixing gold and silver amongst pastels. Furs and chiffons were particularly favoured fabrics, topped by trademark bright hair and illustrative headpieces by collaborating milliner, Jenivieve Berlin. This collection had a less obvious, more macabre undertone, with some garments suggesting an element of androgyny whilst others provided a throwback to the Victorian era.

Trend Overview
Throughout this season of London Fashion Week, it became increasingly apparent to me that the days of conserved tones and short skirts are slowly but surely being ousted out by the return of colourful and more vivid hues as well as ladylike structured outfits. For the next season, I know I will be heavily investing in designs that rest just above the knee, in tones of blue, orange, red and yellow. One thing I will be looking to scrap are metallic fabrics and close-fitted outfits that do not flatter the hourglass figure as I am confident they will gradually fade out of fashion within the next six months.
To sum up this season one sentence?
Quite frankly, the lady is back.

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Anorak Me

I have always been a bit of an anorak so I was over the moon when I snagged this bright beauty from Topshop in the sale at a knock down price of £20.

I also have been lusting after these down filled delights by Duvetica from Net-a-Porter a bit more expensive but very easy on the eye the colours are amazing and if the reviews are to be believed these are the ultimate down jackets…

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William Chambers gets a-headonism

It is always great to encounter a fellow Scot when south of the border and I was more than delighted to catch up with the gorgeous insanely talented William Chambers at London Fashion Week. If you follow this blog you will know I am a fan of this master of millinery I am sure you will agree its difficult not to fall in love with his amazing designs. William was showing as part of Headonism a showcase sponsored by Royal Ascot and curated by Stephen Jones.

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Sheer Longing for Spring

The sun came out today an occurrence that made me yearn for bare legs, colourful toe nails and some serious sandal action! Some of my Springspiration for comes from more images collected at LFW including these sheer delights from Simone Rocha.

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G Spots

Some of the bold, beautiful people in an around Somerset House during London Fashion Week captured by my talented friend and photographer G

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Lassies at LFW

I couldn’t help but put together a wee photo story on the amazingness that it was to experience London Fashion Week with my bestie Mrs JP. Having convinced ourselves we were not there I repeat NOT there to have our photograph taken our resolution well and truly backfired as we preened and posed with the best of them on the cobbles of Somerset House. Greg our trusty photographer (there to snap the real style) caught us in the throes of our best poses for other street stye snappers…

Images Greg Jackson

This final pic is the icing on the cake we were snapped by the roving lens of London Fashion Week Daily sporting the latest in cheesy grins loving every minute of the attention…yep there is no way we were there to get our photo taken tee hee!!

Image Marcus Dawes LFW Daily

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Spijkers en Spijkers AW 2012

One of my first scribbles in my notebook at the Spijkers en Spijkers show at LFW was “birds of paradise” this was before reading the show preamble which in my excitement I had sat on and only discovered as I left (total LFW newbie). On reading the inspiration and title of the show “Birds of Paradise” I was happy to learn that I had indeed “got it” in my scribbled interpretations. The birds of paradise behind the inspiration for the Dutch design duo are Big Edie and Little Edie Bouvier Beale NY socialites and first cousins of the every so slightly more well known Bouvier.

As the models sashayed down the runway to “Is that all there is?” I was pleased to be able to genuinely enjoy the classic wearability of each look. Combinations of yellow, black, purple and night shadow blue blended perfectly with scallop, feather, and geometric detailing. Luxurious silks, satins, crepe de chine and wool gave the collection that sumptuous feel synonymous with high society in the stylish 30s. The bright blue bird of paradise perched on the shoulder of jackets, dresses and jumpsuits finished each with a feathery flourish. Overall a perfect interpretation of the era of the eccentrically stylish mother and daughter.

Photography Greg Jackson

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Goodbye LFW

My 2 days of London Fashion Week are officially over I am back on my side of the border foot sore and full of wonderful memories! My experience included a couple of shows, a few glasses of fizz, some flashing photography and a good drenching! More will be shared soon as my tired old feet need a good old rest…

Photography Greg Jackson

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Henrietta Ludgate at LFW

The Scottish contingent are in full force at London Fashion Week this year my first port of call is the collaboration between luxury clothing designer Henrietta Ludgate and up and coming jewellery designer Euan McWhirter. The beautiful cashmere jewel embellished dresses sit perfectly in the LBD category. The designs are classic with an edge to the detailing and the finish is the softest of soft cashmere go Scottish design you are doing us proud! More LFW updates to follow…

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Shao Yen

My first foray into LFW will include a chance to catch London based designer Shao Yen. Drawing inspiration from the human body inside and out, the sea and world of the goddess the silhouettes are both interesting and provocative. The SS12 collection Sseddog explores the anti-goddess mixing tribal, punk and street styles celebrating a rough around the edges look that opposes the previous AW11 Goddess inspired pieces.

Featured in the great and the good and worn by the more daring celeb Shao Yen is a future force and I for one am a tad excited to view the AW 12 collection next Saturday watch this space for an update!

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