WORDS Kara Douglas
Anarchy arose once again on the streets of London amidst the tumultuous tube strikes and in the fashion world too as another LFWM drew to an explosive awe-inspiring close, with the highly anticipated debut of Dame Vivienne Westwood and her “Ecotricity” AW17 menswear line.
The collection showcased a rousing flirtation with gender fluidity. Men wore dresses, skirts and exposed their chests, almost vulnerably, in delicate low cut shirts whilst women carried themselves confidently in deconstructed suits with powerful shoulder silhouettes and satin ties. The sense of Westwood’s famous unisex ideals were poignant in almost every piece, from the AW17 line’s more simple aspects of long floating cloaks and casual graphic prints to its luxurious use of velvets and embroidered embellishments.
Westwood returned to London this week alongside her designer partner Andreas Kronthaler in an eco-friendly conscious decision to bring the brand home. A notion addressed ever so subtly in the show notes as they read “What’s good for the planet is good for the economy and what’s bad for the planet is bad for the economy”. These free spirit sentiments were embodied by Westwood’s army as they flooded the runway in a riot of textures, metallics and earthy tones. Models adorned vibrant face paints, eccentric paper crowns and brooches containing anti-climate change slogans. The collection overall had a strikingly modernistic feel yet still managed to pull on the nostalgic heartstrings of Westwood’s followers with hints of punk heritage through it’s ripped and torn tailoring and rebellious accessorizing of phallus shaped pendants and plastic knife earrings. In a time where we crave the juxtaposition of eccentricity and everyday wearability from our fashion, Vivienne Westwood truly delivers.