Monday 21 February 2011

LFW Diary AW11: PPQ

Images courtesy of Catwalking
I felt especially lucky this season to be invited to - in my humble opinion - one of the most eagerly awaited shows of the LFW season among press, buyers and celebrities alike – PPQ. With a front row boasting infamous names from Nat Weller and Jo Wood to Jaime Winstone, Paloma Faith and Corrine Bailey Rae, it seems that PPQ is one of London's hottest tickets so it was great for lil' old me to be there too, in the penultimate row, but I'm going up in the world - much to my delight and relief!
Entitled Francesina, the AW11 showcase had the entire audience on the edge of our seats - after openly gaping at the now prolific inflatable man being mobbed by the paparazzi - as the musical introduction started, but the lights stayed dim, enticing us with what was to come next. As the lights flooded the catwalk, Lil' Kim's Put Ya Lighters Up broke the eager crowds collective "shhh", and really set the tone with everyone tapping their feet and bopping along cool gangster style - something I never thought I'd see at LFW, where let's face it, the majority of the visitors and patrons could loosely be categorised as middle class and/or white - but perhaps this in itself reflects the magic of PPQ.
In terms of fashion, we were treated to an endless stream of models sporting glittery red lips and cutesy plaited pigtails - worn just above the ears - with an assortment of soft structured feline come papal hats in black (which I took as a reflection of the darker side to Catholicism). Great feminine cuts and short and flirty hemlines were mainstay as were the dark colour palette of black and grey, which had the occasional lift with splashes of regal purple. A texture rich collection – ideal for someone who loves all things tactile like moi – velvet was the dominant fabric utilised within garments; as trimming and finishing and also to tie the model’s plaits.

Rather an eclectic collection, borrowing bits and bobs from their highly acclaimed back catalogue - the old adage ‘if it’s not broken, don’t fix it’ definitely applied - with volume being the big focus. Frills and ruffle details were visible everywhere from collars and hemlines to the tops of knee-high socks and shoes, with exaggerated Jacobean shoulders enhancing the kooky aesthetic further. In sum, a great spectacle of Catwoman meets Jacobean pope with a bit of loud hip hop thrown in for good measure – an inspired combination I can guarantee you won’t be seeing anywhere else!

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