The international collections are in full swing and the message from the runway is clear: next season it's all about sex, shimmer and 1990.
All That Glitters
Former model turned stylist turned designer, L'Wren Scott lead the sparkle brigade with a beautifully tailored, high-shine collection that slinked and shimmied down the runway. Scott knows red carpet glamour and used versions of molten gold in everything from threaded tweed coats to evening gowns. Marc Jacobs made over simple shapes such as pyjamas and shirt shifts with a luxurious matte sequins of bronze, ruby and sapphire. While A-list favourite Tom Ford broke from the sleek lines of his design past clashing colour, lace, prints and sequins with fringing, jersey and fur in possibly his most decadent, collection ever.
Dust off your Nirvana tour t-shirt because fashion is re-heating the Grunge soufflé. House of Holland's collection was inspired by thrift shop dressing and house music. While the founder of anti-establishment Vivienne Westwood continued her lifetime devotion to punk tartan - as did Jeremy Scott – with many other designers revisiting the silhouettes that defined that era such as oversized coats, sweaters and knee-length nana skirts. Smells like? A flash in the pan.
Bringing Sexy Back
Sex sells everything. No matter what price you put on it. At the luxury end, designer Christopher Bailey turned up the heat on iconic British brand Burberry with a collection inspired by 1960s showgirl Christine Keeler. Aptly titled 'Trench Kissing' it re-worked Keeler's key looks with lots of tight sweaters, pencil skirts, block heels and belted coats in rubber, shiny cashmere and animal prints. On the opposite end of the spectrum, High Street label River Island (opening in Australia early 2014) banked on Rihanna's signature swagger to sell sex at much lower price point. The singer's debut collection was more an ode to her personal wardrobe than a true fashion collaboration but the tight crop tops and thigh-split skirts will make the cash registers ring with the mass market customer.
The Return Of Red
After seasons drenched in tangerine, acid yellow and neon the runway was filled with inky black, fresh winter white and glorious, juicy red. From fire engine to cherry, the colour of love was used liberally and luxuriously in wool, satin, lace and leather. Oscar de la Renta put it to good use in belted jackets and split pencil skirts, Marchesa gave it the eighteenth century opulence treatment with brocade-trimmed gowns, Gucci made it sexy in high-shine leather while Preen turned it punk in skinny pants and military cropped jackets.
TOP THREE MINI TRENDS
Thigh-high boots: From DKNY to Prabal Gurung there were thigh-grazing boots of every colour and heel height.
Hats: Beanies, fisherman, caps, pillbox - hats are the new handbag. The most interesting styles are knitted in cable, cashmere and angora.
Capes: More Maid Marion than Little Red Riding Hood the latest batch of capes are medieval length sweeping the ground in heavy velvets, satin and wool.