A breeze from Bloomsbury blew through Burberry Prorsum, leaving in its wake hand-painted flower motifs, lots of floaty fabrics and blanket shawls for Virginia Woolf wannabes with an eye for trends. Chief creative officer Christopher Bailey said it was the Bloomsbury set’s country retreat at Charleston in East Sussex, England, that fueled his imagination.
The naïve, smudgy flowers, created in Bailey’s studio, blossomed as prints on scarves and silk crepe dresses. Other versions were painted on lightweight silk cotton organdy trenchcoats, as well as leather, suede and shearling coats, toggle belts and short boots. A more defined print of flowers and vines wound its way across dresses — some with high waists, smocking and bows at the neck — as fluttery as summer nightgowns.
To keep his literary ladies from catching pneumonia — it is fall, after all — Bailey had his Scottish mills weave a stack of wool and cashmere blankets in stripes and geometric patterns. The models wore them as shawls, and they were also worked as blanket-inspired coats and jackets.
Bags came in tufted velvet and carpet-bag weaves — and were big enough to fit a few notebooks, pencils and paintboxes.