June 09, 2014 London
So it was tabula rasa for Temperley, and that was clear from the first look, a Prince of Wales check suit that sent the message that these were intrinsically cool yet wearable pieces that should appeal to street-style bloggers and corporate women alike. Embellishment, a Temperley mainstay, was for the most part muted; instead there was a focus on tailoring and fabrics (the latter mostly came from Italian mills, with suitings from England and beading from India). Temperley is a red-carpet habitué, but she knows it's not high-voltage statements that are critical for her customer's daily diet: There were plenty of easy pieces here, with monochrome prints laid over graphics, Japanese woodblock, butterflies, and a pattern that looked like broderie anglaise.
The white shirt was also an anchor: The way it was used in an evening look with a statement maxi skirt had echoes of Carolina Herrera. The Prince of Wales check also found its way onto a sublime evening gown, with the slightest hint of sparkle via crystal straps. A statement black-and-white evening dress said high voltage. Intriguingly, suits were teamed with Converse shoes. "They haven't left my feet for weeks," said Temperley. "A great friend of mine got married recently in the most exquisite handworked dress, mixed with Converse. It didn't hurt that she's 6 feet 1—but nonetheless, it was so inspiring." There were also caftans—a Temperley fail-safe—as well as kitten-soft cashmere sweaters and a great cropped quilted leather biker jacket with a neck-hugging collar.
Temperley tries to avoid falling into a pattern or fashion rut. When something starts defining her, like a honeycomb wool sweater or a beaded evening dress, she switches it up and challenges her customer to follow her vision of modernity. She likes to keep her fans on their toes, and they seem more than happy to keep up with her.