When Sarah Burton (the current creative director of Alexander McQueen) and her band of textile specialists took a day trip out of London to visit Great Dixter house in Eastern Sussex, its flower borders were in spectacular bloom. The photographs of what they saw filled walls in the studio and set Burton off. “It was about Britishness, being in the garden and the healing power of nature” she said.
There were pergolas with canopies draped with embroidered flowers and a brick runway. The models (with their drenched-in-a-downpour hair) marched along the garden path in studded flat boots, with a crowd inspired both by the flowerbeds and the history of an English country house. The collection was inspired by the “House Style” exhibition at Chatsworth House and also the clothes that British aristocrats wear in their country homes.
The sgow began with deconstructed and falling-apart raincoats over pink chiffon ruffled dresses. Quilts, eiderdowns and wallpaper prints inspired patchwork coats. Gardener’s waxed-cotton Barbours became khaki dresses and outdoor pants. Tailoring was inspired by English gentleman’s black-and-white checks and military tattersall. Decaying wedding dresses were brought down from the attic and their remains were worn over black trousers.
This season, some of the clothes harked back to the ’50s in glassy synthetic organza dance dresses in poppy and peony hues. The show finished with eveningwear fit for a grand country wedding.
What could be more fabulous than that?!