This kaleidoscope of a collection was one of Roksanda Ilincic’s most powerful — strong on color, texture and references to the work of female artists Lee Krasner and Rana Begum, whose tie-dyed fishnets were strung across the ceiling of a courtyard at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.
Filled with regal shapes and culinary colors such as grape, bordeaux, blueberry and orange, this grand outing had a certain Joan of Arc toughness about it, and tapped into the emerging London mood. Designers have been sending out sturdy wool tailoring, supple leather, long lengths and sleeves. It’s a new suit of armor for the everyday warrior who’s fighting on the personal, professional and political front, and who wants to look fabulous, and feel comfortable, as she gallops into battle.
Ilincic showed off silk gowns with regal capes spilling down the back, and long two-tone dresses with voluminous tiers and ruffles. Bright colors burst from a sweater made from chunky braids and loops of yarn, while a belted coat was a patchwork of wooly color and texture. A pattern resembling shards of colored glass covered a dress with long, billowing sleeves that gathered gently at the elbow.
There was so much here for fashion-loving warriors: The roomy layered suits — some belted, some styled like a salwar kameez; the long and puffy burgundy faux leather coat, and a lineup of soft blouses and billowing dresses with high necks and long puffed sleeves. Power dressing? That belongs to the Eighties. Today is about soft power dressing.