22 September 2009

LFW show report: Henry Holland’s wedding march

You can always count on Henry Holland to produce a fun-filled show. The only problem is that sometimes the fun – we’re talking pumping music, the party-girl set front row and that ubiquitous catwalk appearance from BFF Agyness Deyn – attracts more attention that his collection. And with an over-the-top Wedding theme, complete with confetti enclosed in the invitation and the catwalk in the centre of Guildhall’s chapel, it threatened to do so again this season. ‘It’s all about what she wears to a wedding; the choices she has got in her wardrobe to wear,’ Henry said of his Spring 2010 girl – clearly, one with a lot of pizzazz judging by his as-always vivid colour palette of bright purple, pink and clashing orange. There were other House of Holland trademarks, too. Block shapes in contrasting colours was one: this time oatmeal squares arranged randomly on a purple boyfriend jacket, and polka dots on slouchy, off-the-shoulder in the reverse colour-way. Re-working denim another (perhaps in inspired by his recent collaboration with Levi’s): fine knit black crop tops with denim circles in place of breasts and buckled, boy-con dresses with sheer paneling. Cheeky touches like the bejewelled safety pin earrings. But at the same time this was a departure for House of Holland. (And not just because, for the first time, Aggy didn’t walk). The neon pink trench coat, sleeves rolled up, suggested a certain 1980’s powerhouse woman – something Henry touched on himself, referencing Pretty Woman in his show notes – as did the sleeveless, collared dresses and polka-dot knits slung around the shoulders. Even the four skin-tight ‘Bridesmaid’ lace dresses that introduced Henry’s bride, Dree, looked more thought through than you might expect from the young London designer. Still, Henry couldn’t resist a finale fourish. A line-up of models wearing cropped slogan tees emblazoned with ‘Old’, ‘New’, ‘Borrowed’ and ‘Blue’ strutting their stuff down to the sounds of ‘We’re going to the chapel and we’re…’ It was a fitting end to a fun collection. But, oh dear, there goes that word again…

- Hattie Brett


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