Compelling colour stories emerged throughout day two of London Fashion Week, as designers dipped their brushes into new and intriguing palettes.

We’ve become used to Faustine Steinmetz’s mostly denim looks from past seasons (I won’t reveal how many pairs of jeans I threw away trying to recreate her frayed denim ensembles). But for her new autumn line, she cranked up the colour – choc-a-block with yellow, tangerine and teal, amid whites and nudes. It was a delightful surprise and worked nicely to accentuate Faustine’s almost couture-like handling of American cotton.  

Perched inside white cubes and grouped by colour in rooms at the Tate Britain, the models at her show resembled nothing less than sculptural installations. Even the foiled Neoprene bags (which double up as tops and belts) looked like works of art.

Since visiting Molly Goddard’s studio recently (watch my interview here), I’ve become enamoured with her smock dresses in marshmallow pastels and bold checks. Happily, her presentation yesterday didn’t disappoint. Awash with ethereal pleated and smocked dresses in pale pink, dusty nudes, sky blue and ivory, the soft colours put an aptly hazy filter to her nostalgic, fantastical vision.

Simone Rocha’s show yesterday also featured dreamy tailored tulle dresses in ivory, pale pink and red, but with darker, almost eerie elements mixed in. Citing “baptism, birth, rebirth, Victorian dress” as some of the ideas behind this collection, Rocha really seemed to be coming of age with this show (it’s perhaps no coincidence that the designer recently gave birth to a baby girl).

J.W. Anderson said this collection came about after he’d been thinking about “modern cocktail wear.” And given how awkward cocktail parties can sometimes be, Anderson’s offbeat, cool take on cocktail dresses could be just the ticket. Waves of colour coursed through the designer’s show, with royal blue zip-up tops, mint-green folded miniskirts and poppy-orange ruffled skirts. Against the narrow whitewashed corridors he had constructed inside Yeomanry House, the thought-provoking silhouettes and techniques, as well as the bold colours, popped right off the stage.

 

 

Peter Jensen’s presentation was such glorious fun – with Peggy Guggenheim as his muse, the looks were Alexander Calder mobiles in dress form. Primary hues of red, yellow and blue were set against black and white. The models’ distinctive looks added to the eccentricity – with their short Curly Sue hair and smudged red lipstick, they looked like that artsy girlfriend at school who knew all the obscure indie bands you wish you’d cottoned on to first.