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Westwood shows her method in mad mix


Fashion Editor

There was madness and mayhem on the catwalk at Vivienne Westwood's show yesterday as the designer twisted seams around the body with coats fastening diagonally instead of straight, clashed tartans and checks, and played around with the way we expect clothes to be tailored.

Nothing was as it seemed. Jackets were neatly tailored on one side while the other half sprouted a voluminous cape in fake fur; cropped shorts were half trousered, half skirt. It seemed as though the pattern pieces had been mixed up in the sewing room. Even shoes did not match, a knee- high boot on one foot and a sensible shoe on the other.

Jerry Hall made her only catwalk appearance this season. "I was at a cocktail party with Mick,'' she drawled after the show. "And he said to Vivienne, why don't you use Jerry in the show? So he got me the job.''

The collection, for autumn/winter '96, is called "Storm in a Teacup" and maintained the designer's reputation for clothes that are disconcerting and eccentric to say the least.

A back-to-front printed shirt with tie fastenings down the back resembled a strait jacket and we could have been watching lunatics escaping from the asylum, especially when Hall twirled her way up and down the catwalk in a frothy oyster and black organza ballgown and bare feet.

Even the make-up, pale and red around the eyes, made the models look a little demented.