London College of Fashion M.A 2012 Show – Collections that Impressed

by Katie on February 6, 2012

I’ve already written of how London College of Fashion’s M.A 2012 show ‘Poemtry’ pulled out all the stops with production, presentation, digitally integrated marketing and outstanding talent and modernist vision, so this review will outline the collections I think rocked with excitement, freshness and commercial know-how, apart from the winning Menswear & Womenswear collections of the Year by Tina Elizabeth Reier and Hana Cha respectively.

Xianfen Gu’s bold use of clashing red,navy, black and taupe with sharp boxy shoulders and modernist, paint splash, poppy type prints splurged across jackets, shirts and gauzy trailing skirts, blazed a trail of Chinese red across the catwalk. 

Sharply cut linear 3/4 length coats were worn over metallic foil etched pants that shimmered. A scarlet red boxy jacket with black sequin cutout overlay was worn over a diaphanous trailing dress, falling in soft sunray pleats while Xianfen played with clashing textures and lengths in the split beige foil and red jacket worn over a sheath of flowing, golden tinged slub satin. The collection’s cool, easy, loose style showed a depth of maturity that can only go from strength to strength.

Standout for international recognition is the collection by Charlotte Simpson already ceased upon by British Vogue’s website so I’m not alone in heaping recognition on this graduate. The sign of a true designer is knowing what to leave out as well as what to put in – it’s a fine balance on detail, fabrication, cut, contrast and line so it was uplifting to see one of the stars of future British fashion has this in droves already.  

Charlotte cut a fine line in fluidity and evoked Celine in parts. Metallic t-shirts were worn loose with beaded skirts, the palest pink dress drifted aloof like down the catwalk while the fully beaded shifts, capes and all in one drew gasps of appreciation from the audience and applause from her peers. Simpson’s collection “Biological Dimensions” played with surface area to volume ratios and involved a huge amount of hand embroidery, not only increasing their physical surface areas but ramping up the wow factor. Simply coordinated shirts and wide leg trousers oozed grace while drape coats and mini dresses looked the very epitome of glamour and sophistication. This girl will go far. I only hope we manage to retain her assured ascending stardom in London.

Hye Rim Hong (above) focused on the interplay of gender in a collection built of boxy shoulders and strong sculptured lines. The predictable struggle of ‘fe-Male’ contrasted masculine jutted lines with feminine geometrical colour merging in beige, rose pink and tonal greens. It may be an old idea but the execution was carried out in an exemplary manner. Flashes of gold lifted the collection’s mood.

Arena Page created geometric moulded shapes and swathes and, working with felted fabric, showed an intricacy in pattern cutting that stood out. Page’s Sweeney jacket, felt dress and Grossman bodice used computer technology for a new approach to design. Complex minimal surfaces were generated using a 3D modelling computer program to which a flattening process was applied. What resulted were clever, ultra modern pieces that are worthy of praise.

To see another London College of Fashion ‘Poemtry’ show review please click HERE.

Catwalk photographs supplied by London College of Fashion taken by Christopher Moore.

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