Phoebe English autumn/winter 2019 collection presentation for LFWM
Given that the substantial negative impact we – especially the fashion industry – have had on the environment is catching up on us at an alarming rate, the urgency to act on the way in which we produce fashion has never been greater. This is a mentality that Phoebe English, in particular, has adopted for her Autumn/Winter 2019 collection.
Taking it back to basics, English resourced locally waxed cottons as one of the primary fabrics for her collection. The designs themselves proved that less is indeed more, and in fact can be just as impactful in getting a message across. Straightforward cotton anoraks with ruched hoods and pockets served as simply practical, while crisp cotton shirts were of a mensy but not quite oversized fit.
Meanwhile, trouser hems varied subtly, coming in a straight leg cotton chino, wide leg culottes and slightly flared pant. Bomber jackets and coats were made of traditionally woven Welsh Wool flannels – again, locally sourced was the way forward.
There was a distinct lack of patterns in the collection, save for a pyjama-like striped shirt and trouser co-ord. And thank goodness there were barely any warm autumnal tones in sight, which by now have become something of a cliché. Instead, dusty rose, black, navy and white served as a refreshingly clean palette (slightly austere, even – perhaps to set the underlying tone and message behind the collection).
For the womenswear segment, English incorporated a patchwork of different blacks accumulated from years of fabric waste into a series of knee-length skirts and dresses, emanating a sort of pagan witch aesthetic.
The sartorial of English, while understated, spoke volumes about her attitude and self-reflection towards her role as a designer: “Creating collections in a slower, smaller and more mindful manner has become the only conclusion to going forwards, if that is indeed what we are doing. How we work and what we do and what we have, matters.” Well said, Phoebe.
Photos: Kimberley Archer