A death drop, a model smeared in ketchup, man pubes… What would London Fashion Week be without Fashion East? The platform has launched so many of the designers who have gone on to define two decades of British Fashion. This was a bumper season with a static presentation of Ancuta Sarca’s ingeniously upcycled Nike sneakers followed by four designer catwalks. If you want 21st century glamour look to Goom Heo, a menswear talent from South Korea, who dazzled with a hedonistic mix of white jeans and tabards loaded with heavy crystal embellishment. She paired them with psychedelic knits, sporty cycling shorts or denim bursting forth with flamboyant chiffon inserts. If you want sophistication, Nensi Dojaka has it in abundance. Another CSM grad whose ultra desirable draped and gathered lingerie looks were beautifully put together. From the inky palette to the single, gold strand worn as an earring, she stands out as a tastemaker to watch.
Saul Nash wowed with his half-dance, half-catwalk presentation which started with his models engaging in a menacing stare-off whilst wearing pristine sportswear. The clothes were clever – as his models demonstrated when they unzipped and unfurled each other’s clothes to transform them into something else. Nash took his bow and performed a flawless death drop – that’s one way to make everyone remember you. If dystopian romance is the thing of your dark web dreams then Gareth Wrighton is your man. More of a polymath creative than a traditional designer, he coded a video game and brought it to life bringing back reinterpreted pieces from his previous shows. His cast of antiheroes and murderous misfits tap into a sense of generational anxiety (jumpers bearing the hand-knit message “I don’t want to miss a thing,”) and rage. One model in 18th-century breeches and bodice was squirted with mustard and ketchup by way of decoration. Others wore devil-horned balaclavas and sinister knitted bunny ears. Be in no doubt, Wrighton is a satirical provocateur. Fashion is his weapon of choice and he’s out to assault your senses, dismantle your world view and create a new code.
Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans.