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A/W24 London Fashion Week: a new era

The best of the season

Ben Broomfield

Next up on the fashion month tour is London, a city known for its raw subversion of societal codes. In the post-Vivienne Westwood London fashion world, the scene is faced with an open question: who will define this new era? While time will ultimately tell, we took a close look at this season’s shows and sketched out our ideas. What’s important when looking at London fashion is its playfulness – keep that in mind. Viv opened the doors to unlimited play, so in her legacy, here’s our London Fashion Week roundup.

Titled Femme Vortex, Dilara Findikoglu A/W24 creates a parallel reality that has shed the confines of gender norms and patriarchal structures. There is a rawness to this collection that feels almost futuristic in nature yet maintains direct connections to our present moment. Findikoglu is a designer of resistance, of breaking through institutional power. However, this collection slows down, meditating on another world. Adding to this is the models’ performances. The one and only Pat Boguslawski – AKA the man of the season – helped coach the models to embody their own characters in this divinely fem universe. One of our favorite subtle details from the collection was the suit pants on suit pants look, where Findikoglu nods to lingerie in a totally new way.

Next up is J.W. Anderson. There is no denying that Anderson has carved his own space in the fashion scene, throwing away expectations to make things look good that maybe no one else can. His work lives in absurdity, yet uses sartorial languages that are damningly familiar. This collection is what he himself calls “a domestic fantasy”, pulling on the set design from Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut to inspire the movement and colors of the looks. In fact, to deepen this Kubrick-ness, why not make a film? Well, that’s what Anderson did for this collection. Directed by Kubrick’s grandson, Jack Elliot Hobbes, the film features J.W. Anderson and Christiane Kunick – Stanley’s wife. Titled “Who is the Painter,” the film, in collaboration with MUBI, will premiere at “Il Cinemino” after Anderson’s Milan shows.

Even if you don’t know Chet Lo by name, you definitely know him by his spikes. And if you don’t know him by his spikes, then maybe by the videos of him sprinting and jumping down the runway after his show. Chet Lo is a breath of fresh air in the industry. He is just so…fun. He has a real talent for turning the things that fascinate him into collections that not only make you smile but are beautiful. For Lo, this season is all about the terracotta warrior. The collection explores the terracotta army waking up; revealing what is under the clay. We are taken through this process, from the clay cracking and brushing off, to the powerful warriors revealing their brave nature.

Last but never ever least, Simone Rocha. If you haven’t read the LIGHT issue interview with her, go do yourself a favor and read it. Now that you have, let’s talk about the collection. Her A/W24 comes to us after her Jean Paul Gaultier couture feature, which was just…my god…Stunning with a capital ‘S’. Actually, it comes as the finale of a three-show long story; S/S24 “The Dress Rehearsal”, “The Procession” Couture with Gaultier, and now, A/W24 “The Wake”. The show was beautifully haunting, with ghostly silhouettes and the eerie feeling of death. Yet at the same time, it was utterly sexy. Rocha explored mourning the British way, with Queen Victoria’s mourning dress used as a direct inspiration of course. Our highlights include the use of English sashes – which in some cases double as big bows by the shoulder – and sheer structured corsets.

Words by Ella Paritsky
Cover images courtesy of Simone Rocha
Cover image photography by Ben Broomfield