GIF: J. JS Lee, Eudon Choi and Daks - GETTY
For the second season running, J. JS Lee had bagged the opening slot on the London Fashion Week schedule (no pressure), and her clean, crisply elegant pieces were just the thing to set the tone for the next five days. From the relaxed tailoring of the jumpsuit and loose panelled trousers to the curved-waisted dresses in citrus shades and sharply pleated skirts, the collection had an ease and freshness to it that made it impossible not to imagine wearing it.
She played with fabrics, folding it into corners and edges designed to resemble picture frames, and turning a stiff, laminated cotton into soft, sculptural dresses. She'd turned her hand to print for the first time too and the graphic florals, taken from pressed flowers and inspired by the work of her friend, artist Meekyoung Shin, were a perfect balance to the sporty elements of the collection.
IMAGE: J. JS Lee, Eudon Choi and Daks - IMAXTREE
Eudon Choi has also been taking his cue from an artist. His muse was Georgia O'Keeffe – and he had taken a gaze not just at her paintings, but her wardrobe too. She was there in the black linen tailoring, those blazers with rolled cuffs; in the oversized, button-up dresses and trousers with elasticated hems that gently ruffled at the ankle. And in the voluminous embroidered white dresses that slipped off the shoulder and were somehow both immaculate and undone.
Choi has always brought elements of menswear into his collections, and for spring he took blue and white shirting and created long pinafore dresses and blouses that billowed out from underneath the black linen pieces. His suits were beautiful too, with delicate floral prints on yellow or pink backgrounds set against black panels. The overwhelming effect was one of a woman in control and totally at ease with herself. Just how we'd like to be.
The Royal Opera House was a fitting setting for Daks' dance-inspired collection. Last season, the label's signature check print took centre stage, but for spring it was completely absent. Instead, aside from a cloudy feather-print dress, and a sprinkling a real feathers too, the pieces were unadorned. There was a lightness and transparency to the organza trousers and pleated chiffon dresses, offset by masculine white shirts and demure dresses. It wasn't the most directional collection that we'll see this fashion week – but then, that's not what the Daks customer is looking for.