The Kate Phelan effect was in evidence at Topshop's Unique show today. Phelan, the ex-fashion director of Vogue, left for Arcadia HQ as creative director six months ago, and today her influence really shone through.
Gone are the gimmicks of previous collections, there's really no need for a Dalmatian coat after all is there? In its place fabulous clothes that (whisper it) will get the over 30s back in to store.
Topshop Unique's autumn winter offering was slick and adult. It had great coats; herringbone, double layer, shearling lined and hooded. It had great modern staples like mushroom leather baggy pants, heavy pleated kilts, velvet panelled jumpsuits and chunky heeled Chelsea boots.
The Unique girl has grown up, ditched the chipped nail polish for a French manicure and left the crimping irons well alone. Well in to the evening editors were claiming it to be the best they'd seen. One said to her neighbour, dressed in an expensive mix of Celine and Prada, "no really, you'd love it". There was still a few slinky sequined dresses with backs slashed to the bottom for the younger crowd, but the generation raised on Topshop in their 20s is set to reclaim their ground a decade on.