J.W.Anderson S/S 2017

Just when you thought you might curl up and fall asleep from fashion ennui at LCM when along comes Jonathan Anderson and wakes you up with a jolt of fashion bravura

Very much in keeping with Anderson’s essential DNA – mixing the naïve with the downright perverse – this spring 2017 collection bristled with tumultuous energy. Themed around Peter and the Wolf, and opening with Prokofiev’s famed symphony, featuring David Bowie and Eugene Ormandy. Cotton pique bibs over shirts so elongated they were almost djellabas; many made in chambray tartans. On a dank Sunday morning of teeming rain, Anderson’s Roman Imperial purple technical satin looked prescient. For sunny evenings, his drip-painted, putty hued linen dusters seemed ideal.

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Cotton pique bibs over chambray tartan shirts

Above some inspired printing – like puzzle style silks with everyone from worried jellybean men to Oscar Wilde suffering from writer’s block. “Sickly and sugary sweet, but something that can also be a little sinister”, smiled Anderson backstage. “I like the idea of the old fashioned cartoon characters as nearly educational characters.”

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Puzzling, but in a good way

Anderson is also developing into a fine tailor – possibly his one obvious weakness in previous seasons. A trio of coats – in jet black or putty green – cut with exposed seams, all hung flawlessly. Ideal evidence that he has finally found the right factories in northern Italy to realize his tailoring vision. Using lower proportions on the arm, and lengthening the silhouette seemed just so right. “They’re really just long T-Shirts with buttons”, deadpanned the Northern Irish designer.

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Beautifully tailored coats with exposed seams

No slouch when it comes to accessories either, Jonathan showed cool sunglasses with goggle straps; his shoes were posh boxers, though not the sort who respect the Marquess of Queensberry rules. His bauble bracelets featuring bear’s heads were indeed sickly sinister. As was his fresh-faced casting of models with naughty monks’ haircuts.

This show of great energy was held in Yeomanry House which was made into a series of claustrophobic passages divided by off-white neo-classical walls. Editors on either side of the thin runway almost touching each other’s knees. Anderson knows how to create atmosphere.