Screen printing, bold graphics, embellishment, and embroidery have always been part of Libertine’s otherworldly, whimsical designs since its launch in 2001. 20 years later, Johnson Hartig’s Libertine Fall 2021 collection commemorated the anniversary in a subtle yet poignant manner, by designing a fringe for items that was comprised of Libertine’s past labels. The symmetrical presence in the collection is neatly displayed in the off-white to beige blazer and pants piece, on which a silhouette of a wild garden entwines itself. Robert Burns’ supernatural and religious-themed poem, A Winter Night, was emblazoned across trench coats, the context of which underscored the magical and fantastical often brightly coloured collection.
Aaron Potts’ collection ranged from yellow, grey, and black hues, ever simple yet captivating. The collection’s shapes and forms were beautifully designed with movement in mind. The contemporary poses and movements made by the model in the yellow draping poncho cape allowed the audience to be drawn in by the stirring of the fabrics and the way they caught the light, which was notable with the metallic silver harem style trousers. The genderless designs allowed the clothes and the models to become one during the display, as the sheer tulle skirt seamlessly moved into the just-below-the-knee black trench coat. Our favourite, however, a floor-sweeping full-skirted gown with sheer inserts and ballooned sleeves. It’s the type of garment you’d love to dance about a manor house in.
The collection to own for the duration and transition from mid to post-lockdown. Maisie Wilen’s symmetrical and kaleidoscopic prints spanned over the entire collection. Maisie Wilen’s previous collections have often been based upon the customer’s need for ahead of the curve style outfits for significant events. For Wilen, the idea that the customer’s significant moments will currently range from zoom calls to Instagram and TikTok posts was clearly taken into account, as the comfortable yet edgy range will allow buyers to smoothly transition from indoors to post-lockdown outdoor events. As the models literally walked on water, the audience felt a weight lifted, watching pastel and neon hues glide before them against a calming sage green curtain. In cheerfully patterned leggings and velvet bootcuts, to pastel patterned sweatshirts. the audience can easily imagine themselves both lounging and posing in Wilen’s collection.
Sustainability meets three-dimensional knitwear can easily sum up PH5’s Fall 2021 collection. Wei Lin and Zoe Champion experimented with dimensions and cuts with a collection that was complied with 2021 appropriate statement pieces. Embodying this, an asymmetrically cut dress with geometric patterns that cleverly added shape, dimension, and sometimes levelness where needed. The dress abruptly became a pale blue piece of knitwear at the collar and sleeves, which perfectly represents PH5’s stray from their typical knitwear into an experimental computative and mathematical style of pattern. Other highlights include a pastel two-piece with contrasting scallops and straight edges as well as a navy overlapping checked patterned knee-length dress with asymmetrical cuts and subtle chain embellishments.
Private Policy’s Fall 2021 collection made a topical and important statement with their collection. The rise in xenophobia and hate crimes that have targeted Asian Americans is prolific, and Private Policy’s collection can heavily inspire audiences to become engaged and educated on Asian-American and Asian culture, as the collection draws inspiration from Chinese migrants who came to California via the Pearl River Delta. The collection features neutral tones, blacks, and pinks and still incorporates the sloping checked patterns that are something of a Private Policy classic. Speaking to Vogue, Siying Qu said ‘The focal point of both the historical photos and the collection’s look book is a hat with a wide brim that half-covers the eyes, which is regionally specific to the Pearl River Delta’. The aforementioned hat has been crafted Private Policy style and featured in numerous looks in a black carnation pink or sage green, finished with a chunky metallic chain. The collection retains its on brand youthful, wonderful style and successfully incorporates a message of hope, honour, and need for societal improvement.
Pinstripes and monochrome, the knitwear genius, Victor Glemaud has turned his attentions to a super casual office inspired collection, in all of its block-coloured glory. Slinky and comfortable perfectly sums up the line, with a section of black and white clothing that is almost close to a very modern, more casual version of the swinging sixties. Flare bottoms came out in force, in pinstripes and knits that would make any buyer feel like they’ve mastered the work-from-home outfit. With the occasional pink and sunny yellow interspersing, the monochromatic black-, white- and rust-coloured ensembles, the collection is essentially the ultimate stylish lock-down wardrobe.
Words by Megan Selway