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December 2004 - January 2005


London Fashion Week: Spring/Summer 2005

by Sandeep Sharma

Whilst London Fashion Week (LFW) is famous for designers showing innovative and creative designs, the world still views London as one of the more ‘edgy’ and creative design centres.

Designers such as Stella McCartney, John Galliano and Alexander McQueen all showcased in London in the past before moving on to design for leading labels worldwide such as Christian Dior and Chloe.
London has a strong individualist spirit where designers are not afraid to experiment.

From September 19th September to 24th September 2004 LFW took place showcasing the spring/summer collections for 2005. The event was centred in Chelsea, London at the Duke of York Square, and featured over 150 designer exhibitions and over 50 catwalk shows on the official schedule. These included new names such as Bora Aksu, Ashish, Justin Oh, and the more established names such as Frost French, Nicole Farhi, Ben de Lisi, Ronit Zilkha, and Ashley Isham.

The designer exhibition
An exhibition centre was set up at the Duke of York Square where over 150 designers showcased their products, not just clothes but also bags, shoes, jewellery, sunglasses and other such accessories. From Thursday 25th September to Sunday 28th September the centre was open to the public who could purchase tickets and view all the stalls and even purchase items at a discounted rate. The public could also take a break with the numerous cafes around the venue and those feeling super stylish could treat themselves to a glass of champagne at the moet champagne bar, after all hunting down and purchasing the next ‘in thing’ is hard work!

The catwalk shows
These shows are divided into the ‘on’ schedule, which mainly take place at the British Fashion Council tent erected at the Duke of York Square. Here the world’s press (magazines and TV) automatically descend, sending news back of the latest trends, and hot new names to watch out for. The other shows are ‘off’ schedule and take place in various locations e.g. hotels and museums. Here the press is invited.
As in past years although running from show to show is hectic, and though exhausted by the end of the week (well one has to attend the after show parties too!) I thoroughly enjoyed every minute, and received a buzz at the dazzling talent on display.



New Gen/Topshop sponsored designer wowed the audience with a strong fun and vibrant collection. Ashish, who originally hails from Delhi, India, stormed London Fashion Week. Although Ashish has been designing for years, for London Fashion Week he is only two seasons old.
For spring/summer 2005 Ashish presented a collection of handcrafted showstoppers, blending American sportswear with his love for ‘more is more’ colour and sparkle.

Highlights included the pairing of N-Sync and Mickey Mouse print T- shirts with sequined copper coloured suits, and trouser suits in sequined electric blue with lightning motifs cutting through. My favorite was a classic trench coat that had neon scissors cut across it. There was a strong 1980s and Pop Art influence in his collection.

Fabrics included specially designed ‘Zamunda’ inspired hand-embroidered prints, madras checks with metallic thread woven through them, and silk georgette covered in printed sequins.

Ashish took his inspiration from the sexy, colourful Hollywood film, ‘Coming to America.’ The collection was stylish, yet trashy, ladylike yet girly, on the whole a colourful and fun collection.

The full version of this article is available in the print edition.

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