Need a catch up? Here’s a recap of everything we loved during the AW22 London Fashion Week. Designers to keep on your radar, iconic looks and more, welcome to our Fräulein highlights.
Fräulein’s London Fashion Week AW22 Highlights
Elegance. Opulence. Kaushik Velendra has arrived to serve it all. In the glamorous Langham Ballroom, the menswear designer presented clean-cut designs set with gold-dripping accents. This time, knights in shiny armours were not on a way to save a princess but cross swords for the best versions of themselves.
Velendra as the first Indian-born student to graduate from the MA Fashion program at CSM and shortlisted for the 2020 LVMH Prize, had been in our spotlight since 2019 when setting up his brand. It’s a lot to live up to but he powered up from last season with a stunning collection of luxury suits finished off with metal shoulder pieces, seductively cropped vests and flamboyant sheer shirts.
Recruiting, including non-binary representation, from 30 different nationalities strived to prove that no matter what part of the globe you’re from, success is within your reach. Like it is within his. Expanding on an inclusive angle, Kaushik sourced fabrics from all over the world: France, Italy, Norway and Pakistani, to name a few.
Operating in a classic palette of toned beiges, black, white and regal gold, Velendra sells a vision of minimalistic glamour, fitting anywhere from the office to a gala. Reconstructing the traditional male silhouettes and softening them down with see-through, whimsical materials, Kaushik found gentle fierceness in fragility. Worth following.
Images courtesy of Kaushik Velendra via Purple PR
Labrum has always seen fashion as medium to transport the stories from one generation to another. In AW22, they retold a tale of their ancestors and the diaspora. Drawing on the archetype of the globetrotting pilgrim, the forever outsider mingling with the insiders’ forces, Labrum teaches an important lesson on a Black movement encapsulated in a short-lived experience of a show. It’s an ode to movement as a drive for life, for art, for survival.
Returning to Sierra Leone and the city of Freetown, they worked with local craftspeople, breathing the West African spirit into the garments. Fabrics illuminated with saturated oranges, blues and yellows, piercing through the black and white bases of the looks. Featuring on dresses and denim jackets, screen prints of hand-drawn and embroidered Nomoli figures, totems for protection and good fortune, celebrated tradition of Mende and Kissi tribes.
Celebrating cultural significance of West African clothing, used to reflect status and narrative, Labrum’s gender-neutral silhouettes travelled thorough shapes, from cut-clean suits, oversized trenches to woollen coats, complemented by bags created in collaboration with Nosakhari.
To the spoken word of Julianknxx on a Black identity accompanied by a tear-worthy repertoire of a choir, LABRUM didn’t only give homage to movement but embodied it. We were beyond moved.
Images courtesy of Labrum
Satin tailoring, dresses cut in the bias and handmade beadwork; are the crafts you can find, among other, at Feben this season. Saying I was pleasantly surprise would be an understatement, those day we got use to couture houses sending cotton t-shirts in different shades of nudes down the runway and call it a day. Feben proves that craftsmanship is not dead and with, I assume, less than half the capacities of a Parisian atelier delivers the quality that we don’t expect anymore from trendy designers.
I salute a collection in which, the design doesn’t compromise with quality -and even find ways to improve the industry-. The now iconic crocheted beaded tote of the brand is indeed, made in collaboration with a community of Ghanaian artisans, and the jewellery are created by Jakhu Studio, a label that works with artisans in Peru, with a particular focus on supporting the country’s craftswomen.
Fashion wise, the collection is exquisite and reflect the hard work put in the different steps of sourcing and craft. The faux-fur Mongolian coat in an absolute must have and after praying for spring to finally arrive in London, I now guiltily wish for some snowy weather to wear such a piece. The red satin dress is also extremely desirable and remind of the Y2K pop-corn tops -the elevated, more elegant version- the crunched texture of the material had us noted Feben’s eye for detail and every little contrast of colours and materials is just very tasteful.
It is quite shamefully that I admit going to the second Feben presentation at London Fashion Week without big expectations. The mistake is only human, I already know that next collection will be one of my Fashion week priorities. Readers, I’ll keep on sending Feben content your way.
Images courtesy of Feben via Raven agency
Words by Alex Brzezicka and Marien Brandon