Sarah Burton’s “sleepwalking” collection kept her audience wide-awake with a meditation that began with Schiaparelli-like “Vanity” prints and devolved into an incredible star-and-moonlight-sprinkled finale. After this, you will certainly want to find an excuse to wear a cloak—or maybe to wrap yourself in an old-time Hollywood starlet’s pink eiderdown. Bets are on that plenty of top-ranking new-time Hollywood stars will be fighting to make those dreams their reality at the Oscars.
The forms, schedules, and rituals of fashion are all being thrown into question by what fashion’s pro–digital age titan, Christopher Bailey, CEO and chief creative officer of Burberry, is about to do in September. In the midst of the buildup to the cataclysmic day he will switch the company to immediate delivery of the runway collection, it was reassuring to feel a gentler, more humanizing tack being taken with both his clothes and his lower-key presentation style. Making Burberry relatable and fizzing with item excitement is his task now. He got off on the right foot with the short, slightly ’60s vintage-y sequined dresses and lozenge-pattern metallic brocades, and at least one great, tweedy coat with fringes sprouting at the shoulder, for Fall. Oh, wait! There will be another Fall collection in September . . . will it compete with this one in the stores
Jonathan Anderson messed about with all kinds of wavy, ruffly, and curved short skirts and dresses in the search, he said, “for modern cocktailwear.” The footwear was great: kitten-heeled pointy shoes with built-in plastic spats that were dotted with diamante, and square-toed boots smothered with iridescent “feathers,” or a third with tubular steel heels. Irrational as they are, they defy the pragmatic and pedestrian and go straight to the top of the wanted list.
4. Simone Rocha
Simone Rocha’s post-baby collection had more range and female intensity than ever. Within it, she had pink, lilac, gold, and red net and crocheted lace ankle-skimming dresses, soft coats, and a hint of the macabre Victoriana black, which is rising this season. Plus a closetful of stoles, furry bags, drippy plastic bead earrings, and her signature Lucite-heel shoes.
Erdem Moralioglu’s cinematic imagination scripted a theater or movie audition sometime in the ’30s or ’40s. Enter stage left, ingenues hoping for their big break. Competing outstanding performances: dark metallic sequins cut into a cape and midi skirt, and the gunmetal pailletted bias-cut dress with a swish in the hem.
Roksanda Ilincic’s soft-but-chic collection was a delight for grown-ups to rest their eyes on, catching the vaguely ’70s vibes of the season without being costumey. Plaudits for her rich color palette—contrasts of pink and teal, plum and ginger—for the way she resolved a definitive frill-necked blouse, edged in contrasting piping and tied with a velvet bow, and for the first glimpse of her bags.
The radical thing about this collection is that it started with Marta Marques and Paulo Almeida pinning up pictures of their own friends and creating looks for them, which the friends then wore in the show. The intention was to interrupt their usual “full look” practice and let in a more “real” and spontaneous way of styling. It still really looked like fashion, though: the oversize gingham extra-long-sleeve shirts, the bright hoodie dresses, the enormously puffy puffas—a lot to add to the designers’ core repertoire of shredded-edge denim, which this season runs to jumbo-size wide-leg jeans. That last is a trend to clock, too.