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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

London Fashion Week A/W 2011 Catwalk Review: Mary Katrantzou

Mary Katrantzou showed as part of Topshop New Gen at Billingsgate on Tuesday 22nd February 2011. Here's my review plus lots of lush illustrations.

Written by Amelia Gregory

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Lesley Barnes
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Lesley Barnes.

On arrival at the Topshop space in Billingsgate for Mary Katrantzou I pulled up my Pashley beneath a phalanx of official LFW cars and blacked out big name magazine people carriers. I usually find it takes me approximately the same amount of time to race between venues on my bike alongside said official cars, no doubt being looked down upon by wealthy magazines’ fashion editors from behind those blacked out panes, but maybe I should post an ode to my preferred transport, in much the same vein that Susie Bubble has been posting about her sponsored Orla Kiely car?

Pashley
My Pashley locked up outside Somerset House.

I love cycling but it was a struggle – as usual – to lock my bike against a post without it, me and my cycling pannier capsizing in an (un)attractive pile. At times like these I very much hope I’m not being watched by those who are able to elegantly descend from their car in vertiginous heels.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Ellie Sutton
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Ellie Sutton.

We were only granted one ticket to Mary Katrantzou, beautifully pearlised and colourfully printed on heavy card. Clearly then, there was no chance that anyone else was going to lay their hands on it. Having scoped the layout during Michael Van Der Ham the day before I headed straight for what I considered the best position in the cavernous hall and discovered that I was sitting next to the proud mother of Mary’s right hand man, one Alexander Giantsis, also of Greek extraction… she quickly voiced her motherly worries about her son’s lack of sleep. That would be none then, the night before.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Mira Tazkia
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Mira Tazkia.

My spot proved the perfect place to capture the models as they swung around to face the bank of cameras right at the end of the looong catwalk. Mum Stephanie kept up a running commentary as I tried to concentrate on capturing the clothes whirring past me at the hyper fast pace that has characterised the catwalk shows this season.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Jessica Singh Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Jessica Singh Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Jessica Singh
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Jessica Singh.

Despite her own concerns that she’s pushing the parameters of what people will wear Mary Katrantzou has quickly built up a glowing reputation for her clashing prints and clever architectural constructions. Last season she took architecture as her starting point but this time she looked to interiors, quoting the Marchesa Luisa Casati in her press release: “I want to be a living work of art.”

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Karolina Burdon
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Karolina Burdon.

Clever hooping was attached at waist level to create a kind of riser inspired by the shape of vases, Fabergé eggs and porcelain bowls – beautiful, but the kind of thing that only the thinnest of girls can get away with wearing. More successful for bigger girls would be the wide hipped dresses, curved shoulders and over skirts that stood proud from the figure. Clashing prints inspired by “priceless objets d’art” were cut and merged to create a profusion of pattern and colour in print, embroidery and intarsia knits.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Joana FariaMary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Joana FariaMary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Joana Faria
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Joana Faria.

One dress featured an extraordinary skirt covered in three dimensional roses in a diagonal pattern – certainly not for the faint hearted… or those who would like to be comfortable when sitting down. Towards the end a series of chiffon skirts swept onto the catwalk, billowing dramatically around the figure.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Sarah Matthews
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011 by Sarah Matthews.

This A/W show was everything I had hoped for: Mary Katrantzou, a fashion designer after my own maximalist heart. I’m so glad that someone out there is confident enough to translate my type of design onto clothing.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia GregoryMary Katrantzou A/W 2011. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2011. All photography by Amelia Gregory.

You can see more fashion illustration by Lesley Barnes in Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration.

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3 Responses to “London Fashion Week A/W 2011 Catwalk Review: Mary Katrantzou”

  1. [...] For stunning pictures and the review go to Amelia’s Magazine. [...]

  2. jenny robins says:

    oh my days, this is the most beautiful thing. The clothes and the illustrations.

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