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LFW: House of Holland

Henry Holland has journeyed fast and far since his primitive fashion days which found him hidden away in his bedroom, constructing garments which would gain him the attention which all designers require to hit the fashion headlines and land a spot at London Fashion Week. First and foremost associated with the provocative slogan t-shirt bigged up by fashion giant Agyness Deyn, Holland’s House of Holland 2013 Spring collection maintained elements of the designer’s passion for audacity and colour within his clothing, but took a step into a more mature sphere where the eccentricity mellowed and the practicality heightened. The result, a coexistence of the whimsical and brash which Holland is so fiercely applauded for, with a less intimidating procession of colour which the more conservative figure could indeed inhabit, but always with that ability to look and be cool, always.

In the urban, minimalist setting of a multi-storey car park situated in Soho, a 90s wonderland had materialised in nothing less than a big, industrial shed. As the fist pumping beats of 2limited’s ‘No Limit’ saturated the atmosphere with its relentless pulse, the models powered down the runway in a shower of mind jumbling prints. Tie-dye imposed upon silk was a recurrent decision made by the designer, metamorphosing the simple blouse, a staple within every woman’s wardrobe, into an item of clothing with so much more personality. Paired with a thigh skimming skirt, which was clearly influenced by the chaotic and vibrant nature of an artist’s paint palette, this was a day to night look; inventive, versatile and paired with metallic ankle boots, but could so easily be accompanied by heels and a clutch whilst sampling the joys of an underground art exhibition. Each ensemble had the ability to step off the runway and immediately engage with the everyday which often seems a million camera flashes away from the world of fashion magazines and catwalk exhibitions. Straight laced shift dresses in varying checked patterns were given an injection of London street wear through the accompaniment of metallic, biker jackets, and many of the outfits were paired with embellished or printed beanies which allowed  the casual, ready to wear clothing the ability to remain effortless, with that exclusive edge which screams “I’m cooler than you”.

The juxtaposition of the grimy, concrete setting with the fresh, kooky prints and ensembles established the animated, fun atmosphere which Holland has been able to master time and time again. A burst of chiffon here, a floor skimming tie-dye gown with crystal-esque flower embellishment there, one is left in no doubt as to why the House of Holland front row contained the likes of Alexa Chung, Kelly Osbourne and Leigh Lezark. All the colours of the rainbow traversed the runway, notably plum and a metallic lemon/lime colour which were prominent in the use of the criss cross pattern chosen to decorate the pant suits and dresses, which also contained the on trend peplum whilst others were belted in at the waist to create an item of clothing which would compliment any shape. This was the 90s House of Holland style; haphazard, fantastical and not a hair scrunchie in sight. The fresh prince himself would be proud.

Abby Robinson

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