London Fashion Week 2021 seemed to be a worthy successor of the three other major fashion events that preceded it: Milan, Paris, and New York Fashion Week. The London Fashion Week 2021, which came after the hiatus of the global pandemic, seemed to represent a microcosm of the trends to emerge in the city this fall. It included stellar fashion moments from neons to plaids to bodacious bralettes and the classic LBD. Some of the hottest moments of the London Fashion Week 2021 entailed the following trends:
Neon definitely has to be one of those trends that come back on the fashion scene every once in a while, only to disappear from the scene and re-emerge again. This time neons made a comeback in a more delicate and elegant form than its usual sporty look. The bolder and brighter hues included dresses from Molly Goddard and Roksanda. Molly Goddard channelized neon in her childhood dresses only to make them more colorful and voluminous.
Oversized voluminous dresses seemed to be the statement at the Fashion Week, this time, with designers like Roksanda, Simone Rocha, and Osman dressing their models in clothes of the like. Simone Rocha mentions that all of fashion’s enriching possibilities lay in those big volumes and frills she decided to add to her outfits. She hoped that the world could see those exact possibilities as well. She spoke about her disappointment at not being able to have a physical fashion show but a mix of virtual and physical experience, owing to the pandemic. She told Vogue, “I love that visceral feeling you get from shows and I am devastated that people won’t see it in person. But it made me want to make things that are even more tactile.” The dresses of the designers mentioned somehow encapsulated London’s desire to ‘fit’ into the anti-fit voluminous silhouettes.
Designer duo Lowena and Chopova seemed to be the perfect representations of a clash of different crafts. During the pandemic, all of us seemed to grow inward and find our inner artistic abilities in the form of crafts, and that very trend got encapsulated in the clothes of this designer duo from Bulgaria. Simone Rocha and Matty Bovan, too, made considerable contributions to this trend. But the instantly recognizable dresses of Laura Lowena and Emma Chopova and the incorporation of the Bulgarian culture within their dresses did a lot to contribute to the intersection of different crafts and styles. This would typically include the clashing prints and the pin-sharp, almost paper crisp concertina pleats in their dresses alongside the distinctly recognizable silver hardware.
The trend of the peek-a-boo bralettes made a huge comeback in the clothes of Emilia Wickstead, Nensi Dojaka, and Yuhan Wang. The pandemic had already set the ball rolling for people to strip through their layers of outerwear. Hardly any outerwear was seen on the runways of the fashion weeks held in the previous year or even the year before. This provided the perfect context for the bralettes to make a comeback. Emilia Wickstead told Vogue, “Everything is imbued with a sense of ease and that feels really right for now.” Therefore the bralettes featured on the London Fashion Week 2021 runways not only had deep necklines but also cutouts around the waist. Bralettes could be viewed as something that is here to stay not just for summers but also something to be worn with layers during the fall next season.
Kilt mounting never really went out of style, and David Lynch’s heroine Audrey Horne’s wardrobe on Twin Peaks bears testimony to that. Plaid became cool again with this fashion week where Molly Goddard, Chopova-Lowena, Coach, and other designers showcased the classic style in their clothes. Chioma Nnadi from Vogue spoke about Goddard’s use of the classic old plaid style, “Goddard is well known for her daring otherworldly confections, though this season she took to honing the down to earth signatures in her repertoire. She leaned into the quirky Britishisms that make her work sing.” Surely her work sang melodiously through her Autumn winter collection of 2021 on the London Fashion Week runways. Her coveted kilt style was an attempt to showcase London’s traditional artisanal patterns, which included the Scottish factory, especially for her signature use of plaids in her clothes. Among other designers, Stuard Vevers and Coach channelized the cool girl plaid aesthetic for their clothes. Their clothes got a bit more limelight with the help of celebrities like Megan Thee Stallion, Palema Elessar, and Hari Nef.
The London designer of Chinese origin, Yuhan Wang, categorically mentioned to the Vogue team in an interview that she was inspired by nature and landscapes. She tells the team how she is immensely inspired by the landscapes upheld in the history of the Tang dynasty and how those artworks have inspired her clothing. “The painters created these fantasy-nature landscapes for noblemen to escape from the ordinary world,” she said. After the grave and gloomy spell cast by the pandemic, the Londoners could have some respite in the form of fresh and newer artworks. Yuhan Wang’s floral landscape designs did just that for them and served as a breath of fresh air for the entire fashion community. However, the designer decided to steer away from one important distinguishing factor that marked those early seventh-century paintings: They were entirely male-oriented, made by men and for men. So she decided to make a change: “So this season I wanted to make my own, for women and girls.” The outcome was spectacular, and everyone was in awe.
Voluminous jeans are something that has been not only comfortable but also immensely stylish. The London fashion week this year showcased a lot of elements from the London street style. Goddard played a significant role in upholding baggy jeans as a fashion statement that is here to stay.
Power suits, dressy suits, and anti-fit suits. The London Fashion Week saw it all. The relaxed suiting designs, however, garnered the most attention. Designers have swapped tops for button-up suits, and all of them gathered a lot of praise on the runways.
The London Fashion Week took place from the 7th of September 2021, Friday to the 21st of September, 2021, Tuesday. While huge names like Victoria Beckham and others ditched the fashion week this time, several other big names joined in on this virtual show. Above everything, this fashion week marked the commencement of a long-standing cultural tradition of London which had been put on hold due to the pandemic. The guest list included everyone from Erdem, Tiger Of Sweden, Margaret Howell, Charles Jeffrey Loverboy, Saul Nash, Stefan Cooke, Steven Stokey-Daley, and Labrum London, who all took the opportunity of presenting their collections physically. However, the likes of designers like Molly Goddard, Vivienne Westwood, and Edward Crutchley decided to showcase their collections through virtual media and garnered no less recognition. The show featured about a hundred and thirty designers. The complete list of them would go as follows:
Isabel Manns, Onitsuka Tiger, Roberta Einer, House Of Tammam, Michael Halpern, Margaret Howell, Preen By Thornton Bregazzi, Phoebe English, Alice Temperley, Paul Costelloe, Bora Aksu, Edward Crutchley, David Koma, Helen Anthony, Rixo, Nensi Dojaka, Tiger Of Sweden brand, Mark Fast, Phoebe English, Dumebi x Gideon, Lueder, Rue Agthonis, Kaushik Velendra, Edeline Lee, Yuhan Wang, Anna Mason, Feben, Molly Goddard, Labrum London, Ingrid Kraftchenko, L Saha, Bloke, Edeline Lee, Eftychia, Roland Mouret, Rejina Pyo, SS Daley, Erdem, Richard Malone, Aadnevik, Catherine Hudson, Supriya Lee, Emilia Wickstead, Roksanda, Stefan Cooke, Paul & Joe, Osman, Simone Rocha, Charles Jeffrey Loverboy, Helen Kirkum, Richard Quinn, Eirinn Hayhow, Pronounce, the chief members of Business of Fashion or BoF and others.
The London Fashion Week 2021 was one of the most significant events to take place in London during the fall. It has always marked itself as a culturally dignified event, and this year it proved to be nothing different. Many styles came into the fashion scene in a bright new mold while some classics continued to reign the ramp. There were some huge hits from the likes of Molly Goddard and Simone Rocha, who continued to create a huge impression on the runways with their quirky, eccentric styles. However, there were also quite a few misses which received criticism from the fashion critics attending the show.
One of the biggest distinguishing factors for this year’s show would definitely be the fact that it was a curious mixture of the physical ramp as well as virtual showcasing. With the onset of the pandemic, the fashion scene had already started turning inward with three-dimensional clothes stunning the virtual runways, making models almost redundant. However, this year’s fashion week struck the right chord with fashion enthusiasts the world over because it had something for the old-school fashion blokes as well as the new-gen ones. Overall it has been an event worth talking about for the months to come and definitely showcased some styles that people, especially Londoners, could be seen dining in the fall of next season.