This is not a typical pre-fall collection: Having canceled his fall 2020 collection due to the far-reaching consequences of COVID-19, Roland Mouret cast a fresh eye over the runway looks he showed in London last September, and in February, and re-grouped them into mini collections that will be delivered monthly from now through October.
In an interview, Mouret said much of what he’s been putting on the runway of late has been pre-collection clothing, so the seasonal lines were already blurring. This period of lockdown, he said, also gave him the opportunity to reduce waste and excess inventory, bring his collections more in line with the weather and “re-adapt” to the needs of the customer.
While this pre-fall collection may be classic Mouret, filled with origami-style folds, draped and twisted crepe; asymmetrical shapes and a few signature body-con silhouettes, the corresponding campaign images are the fruit of new circumstances brought on by the pandemic.
Mouret worked with his longtime friend and collaborator Alain Pichon on creating colorful wigs for the shoot to mirror all the brights and stripes in the collection — and to get around the need for hair and makeup, which are difficult to do from a safe distance.
“The wigs give a certain surreal aspect to the looks, too,” Mouret said.
He has been quarantining at his country home in Suffolk, England, and briefly returned to London for the socially distanced shoot in a makeshift studio against a white background. He also styled and directed the look book.
As for the designs, Mouret said he put the focus on clothes fit for a day — and a night — at home. “Staying home has become normal now, but people still want to dress and celebrate the moment,” he said.
To wit: There is a long, cornflower blue coat, as languid as a dressing gown, and an equally comfortable-looking striped, belted dress with a slit up the side, long sleeves and floppy cuffs.
A silver sequin halter dress with Studio 54 sparkle might be a bit too much for a dinner party in quarantine, but with all the clubs shut and nowhere to dance, why not?
Mouret is moving ahead, albeit at a more considered pace: While he has no plans to show a collection in September, his Carlos Place store in London’s Mayfair has turned the lights back on, and he has opened his first store at Bicester Village in Oxfordshire, England.