Susannah Frankel: Appearance anxiety before ready-to-wear shows is like the sleepless nights at the start of a new school term

 

A pre-collections trip to Bond Street is part of every self-respecting British fashion editor's agenda. However much we may already have in our wardrobes, the (debatably ridiculous) anxiety surrounding our own appearance on the eve of the twice-yearly women's ready-to-wear shows is comparable to the sleepless nights of yesteryear at the start of a new school term. And so I find myself in Prada and Jil Sander and witnessing first-hand the veritable explosion of colour, six months after it was first shown on the catwalk, and a dazzling reality by now. (Consider these edited highlights. I won't bore you with peripheral hosiery shopping, for example, here.)

And dazzling it most certainly is. Striped fox furs in racing green, midnight blue, flame and white stripes at Prada rub shoulders with tailoring in Crayola-bright primaries and knitwear in equally bold hues. At Jil Sander, a peacock blue parka, fuchsia shirt and bags in neon shades of pink, lemon and lime are all nothing short of uplifting to behold.

"Doesn't wearing black just seem dated?" says a friend over lunch. And there is that although, I swiftly point out, for the most part my jeans are blue. Don't mess with heritage, or indeed perfection.

A pair of paper-thin tangerine, pointed toe flats catches my eye. In ultra-soft leather they feel as lovely as they look. Scanning the rails of rainbow-hued clothing, meanwhile, has something of the appeal of the sweetshop about it. Certainly, these are clothes in a palette so refreshingly new and vivid that anyone with even a passing interest in fashion must be forgiven for cooing over them for more time than is strictly seemly.

A time-honoured fashion cliché decrees that those who would prefer not to embrace colour head-on, might like to pay lip-service by carrying a tomato-red clutch bag, say, or wearing a sunshine yellow shirt the collar of which merely peeps over the neckline of a neutral sweater. This time around, though, such a faint-hearted gesture seems self-defeating: head-to-toe vibrancy is the point here. And so, the perfect little coat (black) seems ultimately a matter of more pressing importance. And, yes, I know I have several already. The words 'safety', 'in' and 'numbers' spring to mind.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Associate

    £14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...

    Ashdown Group: IT Manager - Salesforce / Reports / CRM - North London - NfP

    £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and reputable Not for Profit o...

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Ledger & Credit Control Assistant

    £14000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Ledger & Credit Control...

    Recruitment Genius: Project Administrator

    £16000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Administrator is requ...

    Day In a Page

    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
    Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

    Poldark star Heida Reed

    'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
    Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

    Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

    Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
    Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
    With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

    Money, corruption and drugs

    The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
    America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

    150 years after it was outlawed...

    ... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
    Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

    You won't believe your eyes

    Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
    Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
    War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn