BACK TO BLACK: “London is very unusual…I think you can do knee-length, midlength or long,” said William Banks-Blaney, founder of William Vintage, of the local red-carpet etiquette ahead of the BAFTAs. “There’s a greater sense of individuality. I think you can be a bit different and be yourself a little bit more.” Banks-Blaney, whose London store specializes in vintage couture, and Gillian Anderson cohosted a pre-BAFTA dinner on Friday night in collaboration with Adler Jewellers. The BAFTAs — Britain’s answer to the Academy Awards — took place on Sunday night. Guests included Laura Carmichael, Lily Cooper, Lara Bohinc, Patrick Grant and Johanna Johnston.

Vintage decadence was the theme of the evening as sea of couture, diamonds, and vintage gowns flowed into the St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel. Anderson donned a Seventies black silk Halston dress, while Carmichael wore a Thirties black silk Mainbocher, and Cooper opted for a Fifties Nina Ricci Couture silk jacquard.

This story first appeared in the February 11, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

“Tonight, in particular, we are showcasing our special discoveries. I’ve been obsessed about black — randomly — as I normally adore color,” said Banks-Blaney. “So this season we’ve done a lot with black from the Twenties to the Nineties. We’ve got everything from a 1924 original Chanel to a 1990s Galliano and Mugler.

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