London Fashion Week SS17: At J.W.Anderson and Simone Rocha, femininity rules

London's brightest young talents champion the dress on day two of LFW

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Is this becoming the season of the dress? 

In a recent interview for the October issue of ELLE, Jonathan Anderson talked about how alluring he found sex and glamour after having helped launch the age of gender fluidity. Now, he explained, he's slightly more interested in exploring the differences between the sexes rather than blurring the lines.

JW Anderson SS17
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And he's not the only one. We're less than two weeks into the month of shows, and a shift towards a softer, more feminine take on dressing is already becoming clear. 

JW Anderson SS17

At J.W. Anderson, which is partly owned by LVMH, the hero piece seemed to be the dress, which often subtly traced the waist and then flared out at the skirt to swing around the legs. It was a silhouette that he introduced in his most recent autumn/winter collection for Loewe and it worked just as well in its even more relaxed form here. But Anderson pushed the concept forward by adding elements that read futuristic, by way of Tudor England (crisp white cotton shirts and quilted jackets with regal, slashed sleeves for example.)

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JW Anderson SS17

It made for an intriguing mash-up, and a very confident, grown-up collection from a designer who has settled quite nicely into the luxury major leagues.

JW Anderson SS17

Simone Rocha's working girls

Simone Rocha SS17

Speaking of the dress, Simone Rocha's were inspired by Jackie's Farm and Paul Henry's potato diggers. And though the press notes cited 'hard working days', her clothes, done in hand crochet, broderie anglaise, tulle and delicate yarn, brought to mind the opposite: nights out in which one needs something incredibly special to wear.  

Simone Rocha SS17

The clothes were romantic and ethereal. But there was a certain wholesome, of-the-earth feeling in her choice of shapes (full skirts, puffed sleeves, and voluminous wrap sacks worn around the torso) and fabrics (cotton poplin and gingham.) 

Simone Rocha SS17

This was a more refined, elevated answer to the folksy thread that ran through New York.  Other SS17 boxes that were ticked off here included collaged silks, cascading frills and re-worked shirting (Simone's are some of the best of the season so far.) 

Simone Rocha SS17

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