Anna Sergunova, illustrated by Aniela Murphy
It may have been the first ever International Show at Graduate Fashion Week, but the designers did all they could to leave a lasting impression on London; collections came courtesy of universities spanning Europe with one show from students as far as Singapore.
The show launched with a strong start with Wolfgang Jarnach from the Akademie Mode & Design in Munich, his dark collection was made up of voluminous skirts and shoulders teamed with striking tailored jackets, topped off with a dramatic Count Dracula style cape.
In an equally theatrical fashion came Vicole Lang’s collection, which racked up the most air miles for GFW, coming in from the Lasalle College of the Arts in Singapore. The show kicked off with a distinctly fetishism theme opening with a PVC bandage body suit, but seemed to become more gradually demure with each outfit, until the stunning Balenciaga-esque spiked and padded dress closed her a collection in show-stopping fashion.
After Vicole’s electrifying garments, a much needed cool off came courtesy of Lidya Chrisfen’s collection which swished down the runway to the calming sounds of an ebbing tide. The neutral palette, twisted rope detailing and seashell embellishments brought to mind shipwrecks and desert islands, whilst the daringly cut, printed maxi dresses injected a touch of red-carpet glamour to the collection.
Wearability was an apparently unimportant factor for a number of the international designers, as spectators at Earl’s Court witnessed recurring ‘head coverings’ as opposed to headwear from several collections. This theme was kicked off by Linda, hailing from Singapore’s LaSalle College of the Arts, who sent a seemingly ‘blind’ model down the runway in a denim hooded thigh-skimming mini dress, which zipped up balaclava style to the top of her head.
Linda, illustrated by Lisa Billvik
The concept continued in Anna Sergnova’s collection, whose medieval-inspired garments were dreamt up in the halls of Saint Petersburg’s State University of Technology & Design. Four of her six garments completely covered the model’s faces with knight style armour, metal visors and chain-mail helmets, teamed with gauntlets and protective Balmain style padded hips and shoulders. Unfortunately the safety of the models was somewhat blighted by the towering heel-less wedges in which they were precariously balancing on as they walked the runway.
Things only got stranger when Amsterdam Fashion Institute student, Floor Kolen’s creations took to the stage, she too showed a penchant for covering the eyes, this time through the medium of masks, rather scary looking plastic bird masks to be precise. She also took the acrylic route for a selection of her garments and accessories including a moulded bust style T-shirt, plastic feet shoes and demi-gloves which only covered the front part of the hand, but would nethertheless render the wearer helpless.
Floor Kolen, illustrated by Maria del Carmen Smith
It is often the English that are often regarded as the most eccentric people in the world; but maybe it is time to rethink this stereotype, because actually stranger things can and certainly do happen – just ask the international designers at GFW.
Images courtesy of catwalking.com
Academie Mode & Design, amsterdam, Amsterdam Fashion Institute, Anna Sergnova, Count Dracula, Earls Court, Floor Kolen, Graduate Fashion Week 2010, International Show, Lasalle College of the Arts, Lidya Chrisfen, Linda, london, Munich, PVC, Saint Petersburg, Singapore, State University of Technology & Design, Vicole Lang, Wolfgang Jarnach
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