9.30am - Having a coffee on the way to Charles Anastase after the Daks show.
Daks returns to LFW this season for the third time with a theme relating to its British Heritage roots. Reworking the traditional tartan check, Daks took us back to London in the 60s / 70s and gave feminine staples a slight masculine edge with thicker material and knitted balaclava accents. Outerwear was central to the collection with a beautiful check cape coat, navy duffel and tan waxed jacket being the key pieces. Looks were accessorised with tiny skinny waist belts, long thick chunky scarfs, patent box bags and chunky mid heel courts and ankle boots. Make-up was au naturale with a 60s side-parted hair.
12pm - Sitting in the press lounge waiting for Jaeger
The Charles Anastase show, held in the Old Sorting Office, was "inspired by childhood garments" in shrunken proportions. From muted neutrals through to bright magenta and burnt orange, the collection featured a plethora of textures from leather to tweed to velvet to silk and satin. Looks were accessorised with delicate jewel hair clasps and huge platform wedges. My favourite look was a camel button-down back dress over camel flared trousers.
Make-up was inspired by Marchesa Casati and hair was taken from Mia Farrow in Secret Ceremony from Losey, 1968.
Spotted: Nicola Roberts front row.
12.30 - In the press room following Betty Jackson
Betty Jackson's show was celeb packed with Jo Wood and Tracey Emin front row. The vibrant red in the collection was a stunning contrast to the other neutral shades of classic cream and black and chunky fleece boiled wools were cleverly contrasted with fine sheer fabrics. Accents of red floral embellishment, blossom flower prints and sequins were used to give the collection some flare and skinny belts were styled to enhance silhouettes. Make-up was a blank canvas face.
1.30pm - Leaving Jaeger and en route to Louise Gray
Amazing winter coats were the highlight at Jaeger, as always. Textures were varied this season with dogstooth and Prince of Wales checks playing a role. Beautiful burnt orange, teal and mustard were injected into the collection with red and camel, and khaki and mustard key colour combinations. Large oversized lapels were a key design feature and chunky knits were paired with nearly every look. Favourite looks were a fuscia silk shirt which gives this seasons Equipment shirts a run for their money and amazing vivid orange tailored trousers which I want to be wearing come winter.
2.40pm - Straight out of Louise Gray and on to Somerset House
Louise Gray could not have clashed prints and colours more if she tried - think stripes, checks and polka dots in vibrant colours all amalgamated together. Sponsored by COTTON USA, her eccentric designing touch was prominent with large balloon hats, dotty facepaint, large whistle earrings and a bra over a dress. According to Louise, she "took a spot, a stripe, and a check, and then played around." Accessories continued on the same theme with pink polka dot and metallic gold knee high boots.
3.30pm - Sitting in the BFC tent after John Rocha
John Rocha's inspiration for autumn/winter was taken from "the black lit paintings of Pierre Soulages, Neil Young's Harvest Moon and the stark landcapes of Iceland." Using his signature black as a colour pallette base, Rocha integrated cream, neutrals and rose with a couple of bright red looks. Silhouettes were heavily volumised with woven pleated fringing cascading off coats and skirts and looped heavy fabric detailing. Cleverly he add touches of lace, tweed and crochet to inject a touch of femininity. His platform boots of past seasons came in silver metallic and black. Everything had it's signature John Rocha stamp but it was reworked to give a more contemporary, ladylike vibe.
5pm- Taking my seat at House of Holland to find a spare 5 minutes to write
A media mayhem descended upon Somerset House just prior to the Issa show with speculation running rife that Kate Middleton - who chose to wear Issa to announce her engagement - might make an appearance (some even thought she might be walking in the show!). Unfortunately she didn’t, but that was quickly overshadowed when Yasmin Le Bon and Andrea Dellal strode down the runway to loud cheers and celebratory 70s tunes. A strong front row again, with Stephen Jones (in a hat obviously; a flat cap to be precise) and Simon Le Bon taking their pew.
Inspired by glamorous beauties such as Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn, the collection was the epitome of feminine elegant dressing. Printed silk pussy bow blouses were paired with pleated skater skirts and draped maxi dresses featured in either block colour or vibrant prints. Heavier jersey detailing was worked into the signature draped Issa silhouette to enhance structure and shape.
Key look: A stunning bright red tailored coat which is set to be given an outing by our Princess-to-be any day now.
Spotted: Yasmin Le Bon cheekily winking from the runway to her husband Simon Le Bon.
6pm - In the Range Rover on the way to Clements Ribeiro
“MAN ALIVE: The House of Holland girl subscribes to Horse and Hound”. This was the title and accompanying blurb on what was in store for us at Henry Holland’s show. It couldn’t be more spot on.
Taking inspiration from heritage cloths (yes, heritage: the word that every designer is referencing this season), the Bingo Halls and Country Living collection was undoubtedly the label’s best yet. Tweed coats and jackets were accented with either neon bright or simple black in patent leather at the collar or elbows, an unruly sexier side to the classic country girl. Pearly Queen references were used with pearl embellished sleeves, bodice outlines on dresses embellished with pearls and large oversized pearl hoop earrings. However the standout look which tied in the bingo card invitation was a fun, over-the-top bingo ball printed jumpsuit. Not so wearable, but it wouldn’t be House of Holland without a bit of tongue in cheek!
Spotted front row: Nicola Roberts and Henry’s mum.
6.45pm - Quickly dashing to get to the Jonathan Saunders show
Leopard print fading into brocade-style Paisley prints was a focal point at Clements Ribeiro. Of course the label’s signature knits were still noteworthy and beautifully embellished with black beading and crystals: the dove grey crystal-encrusted twin set was definitely a highlight. Again, we saw lace introduced with delicate black lace shirts styled under jumpsuits and dresses to mix things up.
Spotted on the front row: Charlotte and Andrea Dellal
8.30pm - Outside Jonathan Saunders show
After a long day of back-to-back shows, undoubtedly the best was saved till last. Held in an amazing spacious floor of Paddington Central, models paraded down a marathon catwalk length which featured huge glowing round lanterns. The collection had an apparent more feminine, romantic side to it which worked cleverly to enhance Saunders’ creative vision and bright colour pallettes.
Transforming block colour into block pattern, Saunders made mismatched prints somehow complement each other. Think exotic bird print offset with a vibrant green leaf print. And not only that, he also worked unusual colour combinations: a green and pale pink silk shirt was paired with a wine coloured pencil skirt. Sheer panelling was added to hemlines to give an elegant flare and classic, long sleeve, demure work dresses were injected with patches of prints to add interest.
With every look the collection drew bigger gasps, which is testament to how talented Jonathan Saunders is. He surprised and intrigued the audience without losing a sense of wearability.