For her first pre-collection as Joseph’s creative director, Susana Clayton wanted to continue updating the Joseph wardrobe and think less about fashion and more about the needs of the end customer.

But at the end, her collection of fuss-free, monochrome pieces was both fashionable and functional.

She started by looking at Joseph Ettedgui himself and some of the most defining codes he instilled in the label; be it fluid tailoring for women or an overall sense of ease in clothing. In particular, she looked at a picture dating to the late Seventies in which Joseph, Margaret Howell and other friends are seen lounging in Morocco in khaki cargo pants and other loose, easygoing summer pieces.

There were hints of the Moroccan influence throughout the collection — as in loose linen shirting and striped caftans, terra-cotta-hued dresses and a striking stamp print — but Clayton wanted to avoid any literal references and keep a more modern, urban spirit throughout.

“There’s nothing rustic about it, it’s a more city feel. The idea was to offer simple, approachable pieces and revisit the archetypes,” said the designer.

There was definitely a sense of familiarity here, as Clayton reworked brand signatures such as roomy camel sweaters and matching knitted pants, striped tailoring or bonded suede and leather tunics. But at the same time, the extra-large shirtdresses, striking cobalt blue monochromatic looks and micro-pleated midi dresses brought in a new, more modern sense of refinement and elegance that will surely speak to all women who are on the hunt for fashion-driven yet easygoing pieces.

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