The Boudicca experience is an intense one. For designers Zowie Broach and Brian Kirkby, fashion goes far beyond the simple enjoyment of things to wear, and into the realms of symbolism, psychology and politics.
This show was a walk on the dark sideliterally. Models walked in somber
steps, following a spotlight that was
dragged overhead to illuminate their way in a blacked-out studio. But if
the sinister portent hanging over this collection was
unavoidable, it never overshadowed the level of refinement
Boudicca's work has reached. Unlike many less experienced London
designers, Broach and Kirkby have a rigorous way of cutting and tailoring that
produces precisely pressed and folded graphic shapes that could not have
come from any other hands. A Boudicca piecewhether an asymmetric satin
skirt, a kimono dress with a caped top or a dinner jacket with the lapels
fused into the jacket and the tail lopped off squareis recognizable by
its formality, dignity and presence.
Though these compelling qualities have spellbound many fashion insiders, outside support has been hard to come bymaybe because the label is impossible to pigeonhole by trend or category. Barneys New York is one of the few stores to carry Boudicca pieces, as was the London boutique Yasmin Cho, which has recently gone out of business. Such blows are capable of knocking small designers off-course, but by the look of this collection, Boudicca is determined to keep on following its own uncompromising path.