Those of you feeling anxious about how your wardrobe will look now that Phoebe Philo has left Céline would be wise to have a scroll through Jonathan Anderson's latest Loewe show. The clothes, his strongest in recent memory, were the kind of wearable, yet wholly fashion credible things that work on and off the catwalk. There were stellar coats in all textures and colourways to get you from work to weekend and chic button-down blouses and trousers with just the right amount of slouch. There were breezy, universally flattering skirts and some impressive tailoring. And all this wearability came wrapped in a package of technical and intellectual heft. It was fashion, but not intimidatingly so.
Is Anderson the man who will take on the workwear mantle Phoebe leaves behind? Judging by his clear understanding of a woman's wardrobe wants and needs, he very well might be. But Anderson didn't just offer hope for the Philo-ites. The Loewe moment also served up pointed commentary on fashion (and life) as a whole, courtesy of a soundtrack of motivational words from Mt. Wolf: 'It's not that we're doing lots of wrong things, but our mind is so messy. We don't keep it simple. And we end up making the life that we're living so inordinately complicated, completely unnecessarily. And it's such a shame to end up feeling in a real muddle when ultimately you ought to be having the time of your lives.'
Fashion is in a weirdly complicated place as an industry. And the complexity is reflected in the clothes — dresses, coats, and knitwear that have one concept too many. A few too many bells and whistles. A few too many storylines.
Dries van Noten, however, is a longstanding master of wardrobing, and more young designers should study his consistency. In a season in which many clothes look overwrought, erratic and tricky to wear, the ease of Noten's work stands out. He described his autumn collection as 1920s Poiret meets 1930s Deco and 1970s glam.
This meant, fabulous, oversized, shaggy coats with freestyle graphics; crisp, statement shirting in soft, rounded shapes; languid pencil skirts embellished with feathers; and graphic trouser suits. He also mixed in elements of sport, a trend that will be even more inescapable come fall, through anoraks and parkas (both trending this season) and breezy, fluid track suits. They were joyful, gorgeous clothes to see you through real life. And who wouldn't be seduced by that?