Simone Rocha took over the Central Methodist Hall in Westminster to present her latest collection inspired by the Irish harvest festival, Lughnasadh. The designer, who has already made a name for herself with her unique and captivating designs, used the occasion to expand her design language and bring her menswear and women’s wear collections together in a harmonious dialogue.
Rocha’s inspiration for the collection came from the rituals of relationships, and she sought to showcase the ways in which men and women correspond. This theme was evident in the pieces that walked down the runway, with menswear and women’s wear pieces blending together in a beautiful display.
As the models walked around the first level of the hall and carefully descended the ornate central staircase, the Irish folk band Lankum played a brooding, Celtic-inspired soundtrack that set the tone for the show. The collection began with a sunrise of all-gold women’s wear, with bountiful silhouettes in cloque that were puckered like a heap of matured wheat-seed. Darker looks, including a classically cut black car coat, were spaced around the brighter pieces, showcasing the designer’s technical expertise and attention to detail.
The menswear pieces were equally fascinating, with naval/maritime and workwear/Sunday-best formal styles intermingling in a beautiful display. The cut-and-paste mashup pieces were a highlight, with a dreamy black nappa car coat worn above a lurex linton kilt for men, and a brown coat equivalent and pleated skirt on a female model. The standing stone graphics and new plays on Rocha’s logo added extra texture to a collection that was already rich with detail.
The red ribbons that fell from the hair, garments, and eyes of some models represented the blood traditionally daubed on children’s faces to ward off ill spirits, while the raffia-stuffed lace gowns, slip dresses, and underpinnings spoke of a productive disorder. The two final all-raffia dresses were totemic, symbolizing lust, love, and ritual.
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Click on this link to read this article in French version.