Control rules Kingston University London
The reputation of Kingston University’s fashion department may have been the cause of the anticipation preceding its GFW 2015 show. The course has many industry sponsors and all Kingston fashion students are required to complete internships. This commitment to and from the industry is demonstrated by the quality of the collection on the catwalk at Graduate Fashion Week.
Second to show, Natalie Simmonds presented the first womenswear collection for Kingston. Outfits composed of white, blue, grey and khaki cotton and wool, were well balanced. The fabric layers produced pleasing diagonals across the models bodies. Subtle and engaging variations on this theme resulted in a harmonious collection. To top it all each layer of material behaved exactly as it should. The rough ends and white seams gave an appearance of haste in the making, but it was actually skilfully.
All Images by Mary Moir
Chu Wang designed an all-white womenswear collection, or did she. A mix of mesh, see through, laser-perforated and soft fabrics challenged the monochrome in a nice way. The outer layers of the garments produced a mesmerizing golden metallic shine. Engaging yet the audience’s attention was quickly diverted as soon as the models walked down the catwalk as beams of colour cascaded from pleats underneath. This could only be achieved through technique and skilled development. One outfit was especially arresting: a long well cut coat worn on the side. This was on top of a dress, but it actually became part of the garment, creating an asymmetrical long dress.
Wool dominated Emma Johnson’s winter women’s collection. It was cleanly cut, mixed with black linen and other heavy fabrics. The coloured stripes completed the pre-eminence of black.
Carefully constructing her garment, the designer played with different ways of using stripes, giving an enlarged aspect to the long silhouettes.
Hayley Young’s menswear collection had a strong and present concept. Her clever mix and skilful use of see-through fabrics, paper thin, and latex drew inspiration from the surgeons and patients hospital garments. Evoking medical robes the garments featured block colours of soft pastels: green, pink, blue and grey. In addition to evoking hospital and possibly depression (the last outfit actually presented the word ‘Xanax’), her gauzy outfits also questioned the idea of masculinity and its conventions. After all Hayley Young’s menswear consisted of see-through unisex outfits in pink, powder blue and mint green, yet they felt quite familiar.
Freya Domenica’s womenswear collection was captivating too.
The Kingston designer twisted nuns’ traditional attires by using see through material for the main body of her garments, and with each entry shortening the traditional cape, leaving the last outfit with only a black neckband. Despite maxi dresses, high necks and long sleeves, the model’s bodies were on show. Cords, necklace and accessories visible underneath alluded to possible sins.
Josh Read exhibited the penultimate collection. His women’s outfits were luxurious, elegant and smart. He purposefully created royal garments made of wool and fur. Vibrant bright colours organised in geometrical shapes illuminated the elongated silhouettes. An impressive feature as the chosen palette is considered hard to work with. The chosen hues worked perfectly together. The designer demonstrated his control over every aspect of his design to create sumptuous pieces.