September 17, 2008
The Earls Court venue was vast, the faithful were out in force (looking a little more ragged each year), and of course there was an hour's wait. But aside from those echoes of Westwood spectacles past, Queen Viv's show for her secondary Red Label line was actually an up-to-date collection of appealing outfits with just enough of her legendary iconoclasm and body-consciousness to give the clothes some kick. The story could have been "The Berber and the Brit." There was a flavor of North Africa in the hooded dresses, the hats, the stripes, the prints, and the long white shirt worn with a waistcoat over dropped-crotch pants. But the plaid suit with the flared peplum, the severely tailored jackets with draped or origami-ed lapels, and the tea dresses with fabric draped around the hips and knotted in front were vintage Anglomania. The chic of a navy halter sheath or a black silk shirtdress almost compensated for the metallics, which just looked cheap.