Phoebe English AW17: Functional and at no sacrifice of style

Among many circles attending fashion shows you may not be the only one to exclaim that whilst the clothes worn by models storming the catwalk are visually stunning, they are too outrageous for the daily humdrums of your own life.  It is, perhaps, an ingrained belief that luxury fashion that is appealing to the eye may come at a loss of practicality. 

On the 6th January Phoebe English took to the Store, 180 The Strand to showcase an approach that subtly melded both values: practicality and style. The show opened with several models appearing absorbed in domestic chores, to the appropriately repetitive sound of panpipes playing in the background. In engaging in activities that involved a sense of movement, the collection emphasised an important element of fashion that has typically been overlooked, exhibiting the strength, suitability for all occasions and lack of restrictions associated with the said garments.

But the collection could also be appreciated in aesthetic terms; characteristic of English’s style, the bomber jackets, smock shirts and coats featured in subtle khakis, blacks, navy blues and deep purples. Most striking was the use of spotlights on the materials, where the harsh lighting could be seen reflecting on the soft velvet surfaces, creating a remarkable sheen that transformed the decadent material into a casual, wearable garment.

With an intriguing and memorable conceptual display, Phoebe English AW17 dispelled the mutual exclusivity of art and function, creating clothing that was visually interesting and highly wearable for all.