Stripes and sparkles at day 2 of London Fashion Week


LONDON (AP) — Summer may be well and truly over in London — but the fashion crowd is already looking forward to what’s hot next spring. Jasper Conran, Julien Macdonald and Emilia Wickstead were among the labels showcasing their new season collections on the second day of London Fashion Week, which was also expected to see Versus by Versace return to the event. Here are some of Saturday’s highlights:

SUMMERY STRIPES AT JASPER CONRAN

An autumnal chill is in the air, but for 15 minutes everyone at Jasper Conran’s show enjoyed a mini holiday in sunnier climes.

The British designer evoked a romantic summer escapade with a cool collection of crisp shirtdresses, flowing kaftans, elegant ankle-length A-line skirts and pinafores, all worn with flat nude sandals, carefree tote bags and unfussy up-dos. The shapes were modern and minimal, letting the giant gingham checks and geometric pleating do all the talking.

The standout look was big, bold stripes — in crisp white with cherry red, bright blue or sunny yellow. The show closed with a series of pretty sheer pastel evening dresses, all embroidered with delicate flowers.

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SKIN TIGHT ALRIGHT WITH JULIEN MACDONALD

Julien Macdonald said he was thinking “glamour, sexy, rock and roll” for his London catwalk show.

Glamorous it was, and sexy too, with models wearing skin-tight, cutaway dresses with only the sheerest, smallest of bodysuits underneath to give them that all important “no underwear” look. There was plenty of skin on display, and much of it was smeared with Vaseline and intentionally over-the-top fake tans, giving the exposed cleavage and necks an unearthly, post-human glow. The models’ long hair was drenched with product. “That feels so good,” one said with obvious relief as she rinsed her hair fresh after the show.

The asymmetrical dresses were sparkly and sequined, the jackets were left mostly unbuttoned (with no blouse, of course) and the suits did not resemble anything Hillary Clinton or Angela Merkel would wear, pairing military style jackets over hot pants. There was dramatic use of black and gold in several dresses, and a white crocheted bodysuit seemed stylish and chic for the lean and impossibly tall.

The men did not escape the overheated look: some wore black mesh tops, and many were also bronzed beyond recognition. It was a modified hot biker look, featuring lots of metal studs and biceps.

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BECKHAM DEBUTS NEW MENSWEAR

David Beckham has made another foray into the world of fashion, this time working with British heritage brand Kent & Curwen to debut its new menswear collection.

The always immaculately groomed former soccer star wore a smart navy coat for his appearance at London Fashion Week Saturday to help promote the brand, which he part-owns.

Kent & Curwen describes the clothes as a “meeting of heritage and modernity,” and fittingly there is a strong sporty element — think striped rugby shirts, T-shirts and casual outdoorsy jackets.

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