Amanda Wakeley celebrated 25 years of existence with trademark elegant and simple pieces inspired by the architecture of Santiago Calatrava.
Amanda Wakeley celebrated the label’s 25th birthday with her SS16 LFW collection, celebrating by sticking to exactly what she does best. This is worth celebrating of course, because the designer has brought elegance in the form of simplicity and clean lines for over two decades and clearly intends to do so for years to come. In a no-fuss and frills trademark Wakeley show, models were sleek, polished and adult- but in no way boring (there was a corker of a nip-slip piece and a lot of tattoos). The line shined with midnight blue, silver, black and dusty pink- a beautiful uniform of subtle palettes.
Never could we imagine that architecture-inspired womenswear could work so well and be so visibly linked. Santiago Calatrava creates buildings that are both strong and delicate, fluid and solid. Wakeley followed suit with utmost success. Fluid silks were anchored by black workwear-inspired utility style belts with excess slack and d-rings for a practical look. Literal workwear pieces were present: the grey jumpsuit was clean cut and solid in its hard edge lapel cut and cleanly pressed trousers legs, but delicacy was created in the sheer volume of the trouser legs which naturally draped and moved with the model. This piece was pulled together by a black obi-belt tied messily. Suit trousers were relaxed in this voluminous way, or worn low slung on the hips-a look which Wonderland has seen be truly resurrected this LFW 15. A beautiful midnight blue suit was made uber relaxed with low-rise and wide pressed trousers, and an oversized tuxedo jacket. The suit was generally experimented with in the line: some came in the form of a two piece Japanese style wrap jacket with wide trousers and the obi- belt, and many classic trousers were worn with open wrap skirt over the top or a pretty evening style top with a floor length tail at the back.
As well as experimenting with the suit, Wakeley really showcased new styles of evening wear, along with classic evening pieces. The show closed with two incredible sheer silver pleated evening gowns, dominating in size as a city-building would do, but at the same time cascading fluidly due to the choice of fabric. Cuts were modern with bondage-style harness straps for edge and cleverly manipulated patterns -that were literally wearable optical illusions- hardened up delicate silks and chiffons. The use of silver silk could at times look quite prom-princess-esque, but when the silk’s properties were optimised in a bias cut piece, the combination looked positively enchanting in its liquefied glory.