There was a new lightness and fluidity to Christopher Raeburn’s lineup, with the designer saying that he’d imagined his signature all-weather garments as being able to withstand “desert wind and sun.”
That starting point came from “The Long Walk,” a book Raeburn had read “as a kid,” an account by the late Polish army lieutenant Slavomir Rawicz of escaping a labor camp in Siberia in 1941, and walking through the Gobi Desert, Tibet and the Himalayas to India.
On the runway that meant a suitably windswept look, with even the models’ hair styled to look as if it was “blowing” over their faces. That also meant billowing mackintoshes in shades of white, red and black layered over tracksuits or shorts, and loosely tailored coats in the same filmy fabric. The light-as-air quality of the coats was no surprise, given that Raeburn had fashioned them from pre-flown kites, in collaboration with Italian company Exkite. As a heavier-duty counterpoint, there were camouflage print shorts and field jackets, and substantial-looking jersey shorts and track tops.
The shoes looked rugged, too, as the designer collaborated with Palladium to create futuristic-looking designs that can be worn either as sandals or sock-like boots, crafted from recycled rubber, recycled PET, coated leather and organic cotton.
Taking the idea of lightness further still, Raeburn worked up track tops, shorts, jackets and hoodies in tulle netting — for men and women — hemmed with logo tape bearing the words “Remade, Reduced, Recycled, Raeburn,” nodding to his commitment to sustainability. These more outré pieces might not have looked particularly desert-worthy, but they were an interesting new direction for Raeburn’s traditionally rugged oeuvre.