LONDON: SEASON FINALE
THE LONDON SPRING COLLECTIONS, WHICH ENDED TUESDAY, GOT AN ENTHUSIASTIC RECEPTION FROM RETAILERS, WHO CALLED IT THE BEST SEASON IN YEARS. AND KNITMEISTER JULIEN MACDONALD WAS AMONG THE HITS.
Julien MacDonald is renowned for his otherworldly knits, and for spring the designer proved he can also work other sorts of magic. MacDonald’s show, his second, was held in Spitalfields Market in East London and featured a mirrored runway, a live deejay, bongo players, dancers and a screen projecting blocks of color that changed shades every few seconds. Alexander McQueen, who was mobbed by the paparazzi and television crews, sat in the place of honor at the end of the runway.
MacDonald’s supporters cheered and clapped when Naomi Campbell came out in a white minidress with zigzag embroidery. From there, the designer seemed to top one outfit with the next — striped slit-back pantsuits, fringed V-neck dresses, cropped pants with damask-patterned tops, teeny swimwear, an array of sheer floral trimmed and beaded dresses, and nude dresses covered in sequins and fringe.
There was an athletic sexiness to the clothes, perhaps because one of MacDonald’s inspirations was a Nike Talana shoe in fluorescent colors. There was also a touch of Leger-meets-Alaia. But the party atmosphere of the show pleased the audience, and what impressed some was what, relatively speaking, is a new commercial dimension. The designer called the collection “real clothes” and said that the factory he’d found in Italy “literally makes my dreams come true.” His collection will fulfill a lot of women’s dreams come spring.