September 14, 2013 London
If this collection was the upshot of that process, then the whole imitation/flattery thing has served Lupfer well: There were some very pretty alternatives to those sweaters here. A series of delightfully ditzy floral prints was inspired by "a bedspread that I loved as a kid," the designer said. "Very cozy and inviting." Soft denim chambray looks with tiny embroidered bicycles and slogans were instantly covetable, as was a white damask floral series. Bigger slogans weren't completely absent, however: Hidden behind floral bomber jackets were T-shirts that read "Loser," "Lame," and "Jerk." "Yes, this girl is a bit of a rebel," said Lupfer. Apparently, she's also a cat lover: There were "Meow" slogans and cat faces embroidered throughout—perhaps a nod to the copycats that are forcing Lupfer's hand.
Lupfer has always struck a certain chord with women—so much that it's carrying over to their daughters. His children's line at Debenhams, co-designed by Donna Air (girlfriend of the Duchess of Cambridge's brother, James Middleton), is proving a success; his collaboration with ASOS, featuring unique reworkings of leather, caused plenty of excitement. But like with all good designers, his imitators are forcing him to move forward—and his customers will probably be happy to move on with him.