Is London still the capital of young, feral, and fearless fashion? So far this week, the most visible trend is definitively classic—as in classical Greek design. At Ann-Sofie Back, the models wore dove gray and buttery drapery. Marios Schwab sent legions of models sporting Spartan-inspired minidresses of loosely hanging folds gathered together with thick gold chains. And at Temperley London, many of the girls could pass as Pygmalion’s statue come to life. While most showgoers are still in structured suits and severe late-twentieth-century attire, a few back-to-the-future fashionistas like Kate Stephens from www.asos.com were already boning up on their classics.
Could a new cool neighborhood be on the horizon in London? Up until recently, Chiswick, about two miles west of Notting Hill, was considered the height of bourgeois living, filled with yummy mummies, Bugaboos, and Starbucks—a London version of Park Slope. Now, suddenly, it’s cool. First Soho House opened a branch there (High Road House); then, in December, Colin Firth, his wife, Livia, and his very hot brother-in-law Nicola Giuggioli launched their ethical design consultancy firm and shop, Eco. Other additions: Bikram Yoga and Now Ten Pilates, which just opened this week (the Kensington branch is where Claudia Schiffer prepared for her nude German Vogue cover shoot). Oxfam has one of its two high-end designer shops here, and both Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Moss have dropped off donations in person. Ron Wood and Vanessa Redgrave were seen rummaging through some of Chiswick’s antique shops not long ago, and even Nicole Kidman was spotted this weekend, with baby Sunday Rose in tow, at chic eatery Sam’s Brasserie. Let’s see—shopping, fitness, and celebrities. Yup, sounds like Chiswick has made the leap to cool.
Here’s the thing about bangs: They’re great, but eventually, unless you plan to go to your deathbed with a brow-skimming fringe, you are going to have to grow them out. And that is not so great at all. In fact, many of the girls who spent the last year or so dabbling in Irina-style blunt-cut bangs would probably agree that there’s a growing-out-bangs circle of hell, one that Dante for some reason excluded from his Inferno. What to do? Attempt patience, first of all, and invest in barrettes. But the fact that the bang trend is on the wane can best be confirmed by the waxing trend of headbands. Fashion week attendees have been seeing a whole lot of headbands around the tents this season—those gamine, double-band ballerina-style ones are in particular vogue, and for last-minute hair emergencies, perfectly decent plastic versions can be found at every Duane Reade. (Warning: These will make you look a little like Lady Miss Kier, which isn’t a bad thing, but isn’t always a fantastic thing, either.) But the very best headbands, your humble correspondent has surmised, are made by Eva Scrivo. This is unsurprising, given that Scrivo—as the doyenne of her own popular downtown salon—has probably heard enough wailing over the woes of half-grown-out fringe to last her a lifetime. Plain and chic, the Scrivo headbands come in leather and satin elasticizied varieties in a range of widths and sizes, and once on, they don’t budge. And if you’re of a mind to make a fashion statement out of a bad-bang situation, Scrivo has collaborated with Erin Barr on a collection of style-timely, flapper-inspired feather headbands. On a hellish hair day (could this week have been more humid?), they look as though they might have been made of angels’ wings.
We’ve noticed a lot of great statement jewelry on the runways this week: wrist-consuming cuffs at Rosa Chá; Koi Suwannagate ‘s huge crystal butterfly that could have been mistaken for a Judith Leiber clutch; and the primary-colored, Native American-inspired finery at Ports 1961 by U.K. designer Lina Peterson. If you missed these, or if you can’t get enough, two more collaborations are worth checking out. (Editor’s note: These pieces, like the ones mentioned above, will most likely require their own jewelry box.)
This morning, look out for the bronze coil necklaces Californian Sonia Boyajian designed for friend Brian Reyes; his collection’s got an African bent, and Boyajian’s Alexander Calder-inspired necklaces are her take on the theme. The buffalo-teeth necklace that first caught our eye won’t be on the runway, but it will be available at Boyajian’s pop-up shop at 122 W. 44th St. until the end of the week. The incisors Boyajian picked up in a “random rock store” on the way to Arizona for two dollars a pop have been cluttering up her shelves for a while. Now, for a considerable markup, thanks to the 10-karat gold the teeth hang out with, they can be yours.
For something really limited-edition, Lizzie Fortunato’s origami necklaces for VPL (pictured) are a little too fragile to be considered family-heirloom material. “Obviously they’re not the most wearable thing ever,” Fortunato conceded about her paper cranes. For sale via special order—all the more reason to wear one while you can.
A few days into fashion week, one item keeps catching my attention: the vest. So far, I’ve seen them at Alexander Wang, Rag & Bone, and Réyes. They’re especially popular worn over dresses, be they maxi, mini, flowy, or structured, but they look great over tees and blouses, too. I spotted an especially cute version at Lerario Beatriz on Saturday—it was military green embroidered with rhinestones. Even the designer admits it’s her favorite piece in the collection.