Beginning our third day at the slightly later time of 17:00 hours, yesterday quality outshone quantity as Clash headed to big guns Jonathan Saunders, Paul Smith and Richard Nicoll.
Our first rendezvous was with Scotsman Jonathan Saunders, who showed his collection at The Royal Exchange. A vast space inside, in the middle of the room sat a huge mirrored box-which when brushed by the models made for picture perfect double vision-while above it sat a huge balloon shaped light box.
The first looks to go past took the theme of autumn head on, with dirty greens, burnt orange and vinyl leaf appliqued shapes, as well as Saunders oft seen descending stripe pattern. Further on lighter shades of pink and sky blue made up wool coats, suits and knits. Intermixed with all this was an ongoing 40’s theme, seen in the soft curls of the models hair and the semi-full skirt shapes. The sex factor was switched on with plenty of vinyl, sheer and satin fabrics and bosom heavy shapes, helped along by corsets-which stopped underneath the breast-and off the shoulder dresses, the latter with flesh coloured cups preventing any foul play.
While Saunders closed his show to Nirvana’s ‘All Apologies’, hours later Paul Smith’s bow took place to David Bowie’s ‘Let’s Dance’ at the Tate Britain, alongside his closing model in a token white shirt.
For Smith, wherever there was a pocket there was a hand placed inside. In a trouser heavy show this made for plenty of ‘she means business’ powerwalks from the girls, giving off an attitude of effortless cool with their swagger. Block colour was the focal point of the show, highlighted by a selection of lightboxes at the entrance of the catwalk in red, blue and purple. White, red, pink and teal all came through in the clothes, paired with plain leather or suede heeled boots or flat loafers.
Hair was side parted and lips kept a blush shade of pink; accessories took the form of red tinted sunglasses and huge but neat clutch bags. The full block coloured section sat alongside a red and black check fabric, as well as coats, dresses and trousers in a shimmering architectural print.
From one Tate to another and the first Clash visit to the new season Topshop space at the Tanks at Tate Modern. All untouched walls and a circular room, the room made for a great backdrop to Richard Nicoll’s Autumn Winter show.
Two looks in and we were presented with a boiler suit, of soft grey, without any zips apparent and paired with low patent pointed heels, Nicoll’s boilersuit was as non in your face as they come. Heavy wool coats, faux-croc textured fabrics and silk dreams followed, all in a colour palette of nude, orange, dark and sky blue. Alongside suiting and fur dresses was more vinyl and leather biker jackets, the latter ever so slightly oversized with large lapels and two neat pockets. A remix of Blondie’s ‘Heart of Glass’ closed the main show, with ‘Virginia Plain’ by Roxy Music played for the finale; the sheer length of the catwalk meant a collection of press had formed at the entrance ready to meet the designer before the last model was even off the runway.