5 posts tagged "Lulu & Co."
Lulu Kennedy had rainbows on the mind when dreaming up Lulu & Co’s Fall ’14 collection—specifically how they perfectly represent the seventies Beat generation and the intellectual hippie who defined that era. “The Beat generation was all about spiritual leaders expressing themselves in a counterculture way: They were protesting at rallies, writing poetry, and generally making a lot of noise. It was like old-school social media,” Kennedy told Style.com. This translated into studied seventies looks, created via blouses with exaggerated collars, flared trousers with tiny rainbows, and mid-length denim skirts. Hexagonal prints on dresses, crystal floral details on belts and collars, and subtle Lurex trims kept things interesting and modern. Then there were those rainbows, which appeared on sweatshirts, dresses, and the trims of pockets and sleeves.
Every season, Kennedy collaborates with a creative, and this time around she chose Chad Wys, the very young American artist with a painterly, surreal aesthetic. A sweater boasting a Marie Antoinette-like figure, but with three slashes of paint across her body, is a standout. A Vermeer-esque landscape scene on a dress is given the same treatment. The whole effect is a jolting one, the collection what Kennedy considers a perfect fusion of two of her favorite things: art and fashion. Seems like many agree. At Net-a-Porter, 70 percent of the Spring ’14 was gone four days after it became available. And judging by what we’ve seen, Fall ’14 may well top that impressive statistic.
This collection also comes from a nostalgic place. “My parents were hippies and I grew up in this kind of environment, so it was fun for me to re-create my childhood memories. Also, while we were working on the collection, I was pregnant, and from early on I knew what her name would be.” The little girl (who’s just 3 weeks old now) is called Rainbow. Looks like the “Co” in Lulu & Co just got a little bigger—by 7 pounds and 3 ounces, to be exact.
Lulu Kennedy has David Lynch on her mind. “I am probably David Lynch’s biggest fan, and ‘Mysteries of Love’ on the Blue Velvet soundtrack really got me thinking about love. In fact, love is an ongoing theme for me,” she said. Hearts, polka dots, and roses then—symbols of love for the Lulu & Co. designer—flow throughout her Spring ’14 lineup, which debuts exclusively here. The “Co.” bit in this collection comes from the Scottish queen of quirk Louise Gray, whom Lulu calls the “ultimate vibrant cool girl, with a cult following and ferocious ideas.” That ferocity appears in a dress with clumps of sequins and heavy embroidery in the shapes of hearts and arrows. For a lilac dress with mint green metallic foil details, Grey blows up a photo of a rose, tears it up by hand, then rearranges the pieces as a collage. The effect is abstract, fragmented, and almost tribal. Continue Reading “Lulu In Love” »
Today, Lulu Kennedy’s young-designer platform, Fashion East, announced its Spring ’14 lineup. The show, set to hit the runway during London fashion week in September, will feature returning stars Ryan Lo (presenting for a third season, he specializes frilly, girly wares and cotton-candy palettes, left), Claire Barrow (another third-timer with an affinity for black leather), and Ashley Williams (a sophomore Fashion Easter known for smart silhouettes and irreverent prints).
Style.com has also learned today that Kennedy’s Fashion East-fueled ready-to-wear collection, Lulu & Co., will finally be available in the States (and worldwide), via Net-a-porter.com, at the end of this month. Looks like Lulu’s influence is expanding well beyond East London.
Lulu & Co’s first Resort collection was birthed simply because the stockists asked for it. “It’s great to be wanted rather than to have to push,” says creative director Lulu Kennedy. The collection had all the cheeky, grungy, playful Lulu signatures (think satin bomber jackets, quirky floral-print joggers, and Lurex slogan sweaters). But there was also some weight to it. A soignée silk Dupioni dress with a fifties silhouette and delicate floral appliqué detail, as well as a sharp brocade top-and-trouser set, were more Babe Paley than Courtney Love. “I listened closely to the stockists for this collection—especially about what makes a collection viable commercially,” said Kennedy. Could these steps toward maturity have something to do with The Guardian pegging Kennedy as one of its “fantasy picks” for the Mulberry job? (Creative director Emma Hill left earlier this month.) Kennedy laughs it off, “I mean, the mere mention of it is wildly flattering, but I think I would be in the dark-horse category.” Continue Reading “Lulu & Co Debuts Resort” »
When Lulu & Co. launched in 2010, it was meant to be a onetime capsule collection of reissued hits from the archive of Fashion East, Lulu Kennedy’s young-designer incubator program. As it happened, the line was a smash hit, so much so that it continued, evolving along the way into updated Fashion East favorites, looks from current Fashion East designers, and now, for the first time, into a full-blown contemporary range of Kennedy’s own imagining.
Kennedy may have the reins herself now, but the “& Co.” hasn’t been forgotten; the line is still a collaborative affair. For starters, Kennedy often enlists her creative friends (like photographers Mary McCartney, Alasdair McLellan, and Jamie Morgan) to collaborate on prints. “It’s all about finding new things, having an element of surprise,” says Kennedy. “What fun would there be otherwise?” Artist McAlpine Miller and menswear designer Bobby Abley worked on a few pieces for Fall ’13. But the rest is all Lulu.
Kennedy’s inner child comes out in the new collection, which was inspired by time travel, fantasy, the fifties, and cartoons. “When Katie Grand was working with Marc Jacobs last year, she was watching a lot of ‘Charlie the Unicorn’ on YouTube. I became hooked, too.” Consequently, the line is filled with playful takes on spaceships and stars, as well as photo-realist images of Elvis and Kate Moss superimposed with Popeye (Miller’s contribution). Kennedy’s fondness for nineties grunge, as well as her stints as a tomboy and a rave planner, inspired a digitized plaid silk georgette dress, while prom-appropriate frocks and argyle Lurex sweaters were influenced by Mad Men. Especially quirky were the sweatshirts—some screamed out “EARTHLING!” (a reference to Marvin the Martian), while others had the number sixty-nine emblazoned on the front. Kennedy protests, “Sixty-nine doesn’t represent what you think. It’s the year of my birth and the year that man first landed on the moon. Cosmic!” OK, Lulu, if you say so.