London Fashion Week: The five major trends you need to know

Next season’s fashion looks big, bright and bloom-full, writes Olivia Petter

Wednesday 20 February 2019 15:56
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Five days of sartorial splendour have come to an end in London, where Burberry, Vivienne Westwood and Erdem are among those to have showcased their autumn/winter collections for the editors, buyers and influencers at the vanguard of the industry.

But before the fashion week baton is passed from the British capital to Milan, where brands like Gucci, Prada and Versace will take centre stage, it’s worth reflecting on the key trends that have emerged in the last few days.

From the preposterously large but thrilling gowns at Molly Goddard and Mary Katrantzou to lashings of audacious scarlet shades at Victoria Beckham and Paula Knorr, here’s our roundup of the trends to note from London Fashion Week this season.

1. Ladies in red

Paula Knorr, Marta Jakubowski, Victoria Beckham, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi (Swarovski, Getty)

Nothing sounds the fashion klaxon quite like brazen shades of scarlet. And this season, the runway was awash with the vixen-like colour.

It made its way onto everything, from scarves, pencil skirts and blouses at Victoria Beckham to 1980s-style mini dresses at Preen by Thornton Bregazzi and Grecian robes at Marta Jakubowski.

2. Midi skirts

Margaret Howell, Burberry, Victoria Beckham, Molly Goddard (Getty)

There were rumours that the miniskirt was set for a renaissance thanks to the an exhibition on its inventor, Mary Quant, at the V&A, but if London Fashion Week is anything to go by, a more modest hemline will reign supreme this autumn.

No longer a slave to librarian stereotypes, this humble calf-grazing style is quite the wardrobe staple when we depart from summer’s balmy embrace and head into colder climes. Team yours with an oversized knitted jumper and biker boots – a failsafe look for all shapes and sizes.

At Burberry, we saw chocolate-brown leather iterations in pencil skirt shapes, while Margaret Howell served up an earthier palette with an A-line silhouette. They’re perfect for the office, and work just as well after hours. Make a savvy investment in one for autumn.

3. Show-stopping gowns

JW Anderson, Mary Katrantzou, Roksanda, Molly Goddard (Rex/Getty)

There was a time when the only British designer pushing tulle to its most voluminous limits was Molly Goddard, whose bright, exuberant tutu-like dresses became a sought-after staple after one was worn by actor Jodie Comer in BBC’s hit TV show, Killing Eve.

While Goddard is indeed still sticking to her puffed-up roots – a fuchsia gown from her autumn/winter 2019 collection was widely shared on Instagram after her show – others labels have clearly taken note.

Mary Katrantzou, for example, sent models down the runway in a whole host of fabulously fluffy creations, including one canary-yellow gown as worn by model Natalia Vodianova. The look might’ve drawn comparisons to Sesame Street’s Big Bird, but who’s to say fashion cannot be just as fun and playful as a childhood TV show?

4. Wallpaper florals

Richard Quinn, Simone Rocha, Emilia Wickstead, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi (Rex/Getty)

Florals were in full bloom all over the runways at New York Fashion Week – and they were just as abundant across the pond.

But next season’s florals are far from prim and proper. At Erdem, they were ornate and nostalgic, conjuring up memories of your grandmother’s retro wallpaper print.

Richard Quinn opted for a similarly vintage aesthetic, with various gowns and full-bodied skirts covered in sprawling petals and intricate thorns.

Elsewhere, at Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, flower prints injected a dose of optimism to what was otherwise a neutral-heavy collection, adorning loose orange suits and vermilion midi dresses.

5. Glitter, glitter everywhere

Molly Goddard, Halpern, Paula Knorr, Richard Quinn

If there’s one underlying motto for the season ahead, it’s that you can never be too sparkly.

The trend has permeated the runways in London over the last five days, and not just in the party powerhouse labels you’d expect it (here’s looking at you, Halpern).

In fact, everyone from Richard Quinn and Molly Goddard to Paula Knorr hopped aboard the glitter-soaked ship this time around via shimmering chain-like capes, giant Swarovski crystal embellishments on the necklines of dresses and sheer crop tops.

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