LONDON – BURBERRY and its creative director Christopher Bailey made a triumphant return to London on Tuesday night, winning over a star-studded audience at the glitziest event of the capital’s fashion week.
Many good shows
HAROLD Tillman, chairman of the British Fashion Council, said the week has been a tremendous success, with large crowds filling many shows. He said the trend toward prints had been noticeable.
‘There have been so many good, good shows,’ he said. ‘There are great designers, showing freshness, fearlessness. It’s so exciting, it really is.’
Mr Bailey, who has helped transform the once staid brand into a fashion powerhouse, showed a series of short dresses, including many with a trench coat theme familiar to longtime fans of Burberry.
There was just enough of the traditional Burberry plaid to keep traditionalists happy, while younger fans were drawn to the soft, sexy lines of the dresses, most of them in beige (long associated with Burberry) and pale greens and yellows.
‘I thought it was beautiful, and very poetic,’ said Hilary Alexander, fashion director of The Daily Telegraph newspaper. ‘The heritage was there, but it was like a ballet, a dance.’
The crowd, including Oscar-winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow, former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham and Harry Potter star Emma Watson seemed impressed with the variety and vision of the show.
The front row also included American Vogue editor Anna Wintour, Slumdog Millionaire stars Dev Patel and Freida Pinto – and Business Secretary Peter Mandelson, a prominent member of the British government known for his snappy dress. He said the show brought Burberry from the past into the future.
‘It was a reinvention of the Burberry look,’ Mr Mandelson said. ‘The fabrics were great. It’s 21st century Burberry at its best.’
Mr Bailey used sequins and bright metallic silver fabric to set off some of his jackets and tops, adding glitter to the look, and also used padded shoulders for emphasis on several of the combination trench-dresses that were an important theme of the show.
Belts were used for shape, and the models looked extremely feminine, their long flowing hair and natural makeup bucking a trend toward androgyny seen in other shows this week.
The Burberry show was the largest and most eagerly anticipated of London Fashion week thus far, and the crowd arrived early to sip champagne or elderflower coolers on the steps of the Chelsea College of Art and Design near the River Thames. — AP