February 21, 2009 London
Nicoll's way is an unusual combination of pragmatism and a creative flair for making the best of things. The way he patchworked menswear fabric on top of basic toile canvas later in the collection was, he said, "kind of utilitarian. We've all got to be cost-conscious, and that was my way of superimposing something luxurious on top of something basic." The other, more slyly subversive element in the show was the injection of corsetry references, from the odd garter belt fastening dangling from a storm flap to a built-in girdle in a powder pink bodysuit. Certainly, there won't be many of those hanging in department stores next fall—but it's perfectly within the bounds of probability that they'll be in hot demand from music industry stylists. Which means, when it comes to the accounting, there's little in this tight collection that won't pay its way.