With Burberry opting to show off-schedule, following Paris Fashion Week in March, no JW Anderson or Victoria Beckham, and Christopher Kane releasing his AW22 collection digitally, London Fashion Week might seem like it was missing some heavy hitters. But designers including Molly Goddard, Erdem, Simone Rocha, and Rejina Pyo stepped up and became the standout womenswear names this season.
For autumn/winter 2022, Simone Rocha was inspired by the dark Irish fairytale, Children of Lir, where four children are turned into swans. This human to swan metamorphosis was seen through the manipulation of the clothes, with layering and her play on proportions.
With swan-like ruffles draping down in panels on overcoats to feathers peeping out from underneath dresses and sleeve silhouettes looking like wings, while patent leather, teamed with voluminous ruffle dresses, gave the impression of a swan touching down on water. There were also slip dresses with kissing swans motifs and feather and satin streamers flowing from the shoulders.
Other highlights included eiderdown quilting, embellished with embroidery and oversized pockets draped over her signature voluminous silhouettes, and beautiful velvet gowns adding sophistication and texture to the impressive collection.
For autumn/winter 2022, Erdem showcased a dark and romantic collection inspired by Berlin’s 1930s art scene, in particular muses Jeanne Mammen, Madame d’Ora, Elfriede Lohse-Wächtler, Anita Berber and Valeska Gert who each pioneered a particular vein of avant-garde expression.
This translated into dramatic floral prints in inky tones, intricate sheer lace dresses with black sequinned panels, androgynous tailoring adorned with studs, jacquard dresses, tulle layered over sequins, as well as delicate hand embroidery, fringing and beading.
Molly Goddard, who has made a name for herself thanks to her colourful take on tulle, was inspired by Portobello and Camden market scene in the 1980s and 1990s for autumn/winter 2020. While tulle was still ever-present, this season, Goddard added fishtail taffeta gowns, slouchy knits, tailoring, cartoon prints, oversized men’s overcoats with lace frill trims, shimmering evening dresses, and floral printed denim.
In the show notes, Goddard explained that the feminine evening dresses were based on army surplus jackets, while the tulle had been contrasted with cotton lining to make it “more day than night”.
The overall look is eclectic, “here’s-what-I-found-down-the-market,” added Goddard.
For autumn/winter 2022, Rejina Pyo held an intimate salon-style show inspired by 1920s supper clubs at the Mandarin Oriental. The collection was upbeat, with her signature sculptural shapes and body forming dresses featuring asymmetric cutouts. There was also a more masculine tone with softly tailored box suits and matching bomber jacket and combat trouser sets.
This season also has a focus on sustainability, with a custom floral jacquard shearling that has been created using certified recycled polyester, as well as incorporating deadstock denim from a limited run of previous season jeans, which have been upcycled with a tone-tone layered crinkle print, screen printed by hand using water-based inks.
Pyo also introduced the first RP monogram with two new bag families “designed for everyday living,” including a curvy crossbody that has been created in full size, mini and as a micro belt in a range of pop and classic colours. Each bag is finished with an embossed monogram closure. There is also a felt tote in large and mini sizes with leather handles and an embroidered tonal RP monogram.