When we think of a fashion show, we usually think of the glamour and elegance of haute couture. Let’s not forget that the fashion industry is very influential and has the power to carry out a message to millions of people everywhere. When everyone's focus is on the current situation in Ukraine, none of us can remain indifferent, fashion is taking a stand.

Balenciaga red coatPh. Museum at FIT

Balenciaga goes where fashion hasn’t dared go before and takes a stand for the Ukrainian refugees.


About The Show


Let’s experience the fashion show together. As you enter the room you notice the enormous snow globe on one side and a piece of fabric with the colours of the Ukrainian flag on all 525 seats. As you walk through the different rows looking for your seat, your mind starts to wander in different places and your excitement to take your place takes over you. You finally find your seat, take the fabric in your hand, shortly you notice it’s a T-shirt, but there’s also a letter from the creative director of Balenciaga himself, Demna Gvasalia. As you read through the letter you can’t help but to feel your emotions taking over you. The letter begins with “The war in Ukraine has triggered the pain of a past trauma I have carried in me since 1993, when the same thing happened in my country and I became a forever refugee,” and ends with “It’s a dedication to fearlessness, to resistance and to the victory of love and peace.” You start questioning everything and you can’t stand in peace in your seat. The show begins. The models are walking down the runway and in the background you hear the designer’s voice reciting a poem by the Ukrainian poet Oleksandr Oles which, he says translates roughly to “your sons will save you”. There is no translation to the poem, you listen to the Ukrainian language and you see how the models struggle to walk through the snow storm, you cannot help but to feel more uncomfortable than ever. You feel empathy.

Personal Take On The Show

It’s quite difficult hosting Fashion week during wartime and most designers are extremely cautious in such times. Other brands raised awareness on the situation in Ukraine through the social media channels and by adding a little detail to their show but Demna, made the show about Ukraine, which completely changed everything. Balenciaga was close to calling off the show, they said that “fashion week feels like some kind of an absurdity but to cancel the show means surrendering to the evil that has already hurt me so much for almost 30 years”. For him this was way beyond fashion, it was personal. Driven by the desire to tell the world his story he managed to cover the most important issues humanity is facing now - climate change, technology taking over and horrific news of war. When Demna was 12 years old he was amongst the 250,000 Georgian refugees forced to leave their homes during Georgia’s civil war. Knowing all the obstacles refugees have to deal with makes him want to not stay silent and take action to support them and give them some hope. According to some, fashion doesn’t have a place in politics but Balenciaga thinks otherwise, for the brand this is a call to action. “We, as a brand, have to do something … we cannot take weapons and go fight there, but we can use our voices,” Demna shared in an interview with Reuters.

The Meaning Behind It

The initial idea of the show was to cover the topic of the climate crisis and virtual reality. The show was supposed to comment on how future generations might perceive the concept of winter. It is about how in the future this might have to be digitally rendered in order to explain what snow is, the feeling of coldness, and the disappearance of winter as a season. The glass wall that separated the audience from the show was a metaphor on that imaginary future reality, creating an IRL livestream of sorts. Using a humanitarian crisis as an aesthetic proved to touch many in the audience and create a powerful show of empathy, something we rarely see on the runway.

At the end of the day, the designer managed to achieve what he does best: It made the audience think and ask questions about themselves as well as about the system. The audience was meant to feel uncomfortable while watching, as this meant realising what refugees are forced to deal with not just in Ukraine, but in Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan and every other country that is living during war time.

Published in Blog
Friday, 11 March 2022 07:43

Nehera F/W 2022 - Paris Fashion Week

NEHERA’s Fall Winter 22 is a meditation on seemingly opposite worlds: past and future, vintage and modern, analog and digital, masculine and feminine.  

Published in Fashion

A true and authentic show of diversity and inclusion were visible at the Fashions Finest Autumn/Winter 2022 London Fashion Week Event. Fashion’s Finest is renowned for showcasing the work of emerging creatives with a focus on sustainable design. On display was a range of unique and beautiful designs.

Models final walk at Fashions Finest AW 2022 showPh. VR Agency

London Fashion Week Autumn Winter 2022, the fashion capital which nurtures new and upcoming talent, and this season at Fashion’s Finest was certainly no exception.


AKKA

AKKA 8 resultPh. VR Agency

The first collection to be showcased was the AKKA, the multi-award-winning brand founded by Montenegrin designer and architect, Aleksandra Dzakovic. As someone who previously gained her master’s degree in architecture, it is not a surprise that Aleksandra’s goal when creating her garments was to “critically examine the relationship between technology and tradition in the dressing culture.” Within the development of the collection, Aleksandra’s use of technology in the product design went hand in hand with ensuring that an entirely sustainable collection was created. Aleksandra uses advanced machines which lead to a reduction in manual labour, and garments are produced to order which erases all possibility of excess wastage in production.

In the AW 22, AKKA displayed a range of garments which were almost paradoxically, perfectly well structured whilst still holding a feminine elegance. The varying lengths and layers of the pieces are evidence of the skill which the designer has in cutting and pattern assembling. This is the skill Aleksandra needed when developing the modular pattern structure: a sustainable method which means if one part of the garment is damaged, it can easily be replaced with another.
Akka designs final walk at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Valentina Lingerie

Isadora 8 resultPh. VR Agency

Valentina Lingerie is a lingerie and swimwear collection designed by Valentina Grey. Valentina is a recent graduate in Contour Fashion, gaining a first from De Montfort University. The Valentina Lingerie “L'Amore” collection was displayed at Fashion Finest AW 22 with an array of delicate, sensual pieces which were a clear representation of confidence and diversity of modern women.
Valentina Grey aw 22 at London Fashion weekPh. VR Agency

Tribal Hotel

Tribal Hotel 7 resultPh. VR Agency

Next up was Tribal Hotel, the sustainable fashion brand by Simona Veilande and “Miko” Rode. In their showcase, the pair showed a spectacle of a-symmetric, deconstructed garments. The contrasts of colours and textures used in the pieces accentuate the impressive design and indeed the tailoring required to produce such garments. In terms of sustainable production, Tribal Hotel use fabrics made mostly from silk organza, which the designers acquire from sample and left-over silk from Italian fabric produces, which ensures that the quality is never compromised.
Tribal Hotel Aw22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Toomey & Koko

Toomey Koko 7 resultPh. VR Agency

Kofo Jegede was born in Ile-Ife and grew up watching her mother and grandmother making their own Adire textile garments. From here, Kofo created Toomey & Koko which blends both her Nigerian and British heritage into beautiful garments made from reimagined Nigerian fabrics.

The collection includes tailored two pieces, structured blazer dresses, and strong but graceful bardot dresses and tops all shown in vibrant, eye-catching tones and prints. This collection perfectly encapsulates Kofo’s aim of showcasing her heritage.
Toomey and Koko aw 22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Carat 23 and Zarya Azadi

VR 07142Carat23 and Zarya Azadi 11 resultPh. VR Agency

Designs of true beauty were on display as Carat 23 and Zarya Azadi took to the runway. Zarya is a Kurdish model and designer who founded Dair Design. Zarya showcased her detailed collection with the Carat 23 handbags, the Dutch brand which produces the accessory with entirely vegan and vegetable tanned leather. Zarya’s designs were heavily eye-catching, with sequins and beads featuring often, but excellently fitting with the glamourous theme of the collection.`

Carat23 bags and Zarya Azadi designs aw 22 at London Fashion Week Ph. VR Agency

Milena Sayad Knitwear

Milena Sayad Knitwear 7 resultPh. VR Agency

Clear talent was on show as Milena Sayad Knitwear showed collection. Milena claims that her brand is all about quality, authenticity and sustainability. In her production, Milena is also following the important conversation surrounding sustainable consumption, and only uses high-quality recyclable materials. Each month, a maximum of 10 pieces are made to ensure that waste is limited. The garments which were seen on the runway were exquisitely fitting and was a completely embodiment of the relaxed chicness which is only increasing in popularity. It is easy to say, the quality of this collection would be able to be seen from a mile away.
Milenia Sayad aw 22 at London Fashion week

Snz Swim

SZN Swim 14 resultPh. VR Agency

Founded in 2017 by Eli Wilson, Season Swim presented a minimalist take on swim wear at Fashions Finest with a colouful array of stunning sustainable bikini's.
SNZ Swim Aw 22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

MA Student Collective

Following this we saw a Collective consisting of Seronga, Psych Apparel and Soleil Atelier. All three brand founders are currently studying MA Fashion Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Seronga

Seronga 7 resultPh. VR Agency

Seronga is a brand created by Precious Seronga, a Tanzanian artist who is currently based in London completing her master's degree. When moving here, Precious noticed a misrepresentation of her home country in the British media and made it her mission moving forward to focus her creations to represent the African continent in a more positive light. The Seronga collection displayed Precious’ beautiful designs, decorated with traditional beadwork by Tanzanian craftswomen.
Seronga Aw22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Psych Apparel

Psych Apparel 4 resultPh. VR Agency

Gaby Carruthers is the creator of the streetwear brand, Psych Apparel. They’re mission involves creating comfortable, expressive clothing whilst also being size inclusive and minimising waste as much as possible throughout production.
Pshyc Apparel Aw 22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Soleil Apparel

Soleil Atelier 8 resultPh. VR Agency

Finally, a sophisticated and tasteful collection of eveningwear was shown by Soleil Atelier. The brand story surrounds the designer, Aditi’s, global travels and love for minimalistic and handcrafted inventiveness.

Soliel Apparel aw22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Pretty Affluent

Pretty Affluent 6 resultPh. VR Agency

Pretty Affluent was founded by the self-taught designer, Frances, in June 2020 when she had no background or experience in fashion. Now, only a year and a half later, Pretty Affluence has a line of both made-to-order, and ready-to-wear garments.
Frances made her fashion week debut with a collection of dainty skirts, blazers, and an amazingly put together layered tulle dress.
Pretty Affluent aw22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Almara by Aruna Goud

Almara By ArunaGoudPh. VR Agency

Almara by Aruna Goud showed a collection of classic couture offering unique, fashionable, and functional clothing. Aruna Goud, the brands founder, put on a show of elegant eveningwear, infused with her Indian heritage, whilst still placing creativity and quality at the forefront of the brand. Aruna chose vibrant, jewel like colours to show her designs, which created a visual spectacle on the runway.
Almara by ArunaGoud at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

Midé

Midé  final walk at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency

And the final collection of the night, was Midé. Nigerian born Ayomidé, debuted her AW’22 collection appropriately named ‘Heart Felt’ at Fashions Finest AW’22. It is safe to say the brand exhibited a collection of dresses fit for a fairy-tale. It was the complete definition of femininity and elegance. Midé showed an array of handmade, premium quality, bridal-like dresses, which each were hand-finished in a way which ensured they glowed as they were worn down the runway. For the finale piece for Fashions Finest, Ayomidé showed an extravagant yet still effortlessly tasteful cherry red gown. The dress had intricate tulle layering, and a corset top which accentuated the silhouette perfectly.
Mide aw 22 at London Fashion WeekPh. VR Agency
The event was warmly received by the audience, and the designers received an enthusiastic applause at the end of the brilliant show. This was a stunning way to end the great success of the Fashions Finest A/W 2022 London Fashion Week show.

Published in Blog
Saturday, 05 March 2022 17:55

Sofia Turekova A/W 2022

Sofia Turekova, Slovak-born, London-based artist and designer graduated from Central Saint Martins in 2021. Her designs have been presented at New York Fashion Week, Victoria & Albert Museum, and Slovak National Design Museum.

Published in Fashion
Wednesday, 02 March 2022 19:03

Claudia Wang A/W 2022 Collection

Claudia Wang’s Autumn/Winter 2022 Collection debut, takes us on a fantastical journey of reimagined fictional fables transformed into print designs, as she intertwines references to Classic of Mountain & Sea an Ancient Chinese mythology text, and Taiwanese regional folklore.

Published in Fashion

A collaboration between fashion and technology is becoming an emerging trend. We witnessed a lot of digital showcases during Fashion week, some designers really stood out and made the most out of technology, one of them is JENN LEE.

Published in Fashion
Tuesday, 01 March 2022 08:11

Oqliq A/W 2022 Collection: “Spacetime”

OqLiq's design philosophy is to create high-end performance fashion made with high-quality fabrics which strongly emphasizes functional simplicity. The Taiwanese based brand has gained much deserved global attention over the past decade and this year it showcased its collection at London Fashion week.

Published in Fashion
Wednesday, 23 February 2022 16:26

Rich Mnisi A/W 22 Collection: The First Working Man

In his collection and film, Rich Mnisi examines the practice of giving children English names in black communities.

Published in Fashion
Tuesday, 22 February 2022 18:58

Johan Ku's A/W22 Collection

Johan Ku is a Taipei-born designer, an "enfant prodige" who started his career as a graphic designer aged just 17. The designer was later awarded the Gen Art's Avant Garde Prize in 2009.

Published in Fashion
Tuesday, 22 February 2022 11:40

Midé Feb 2022

Midé showcased their collection at Fashions Finest emerging designer AW22 London Fashion Week showcase 19th February 2022.

Makeup: Academy of Freelance Makeup Artists (AOFM) lead #mua Mandy Gakhal
Hair: Amy Tasker, Annie Berry
Nails: Julie Bryan & team
Creative Director: Tanya Beresford
Lead stylist: Leighanne Krystal
Assistant Stylist: Raahim Khan
Student Stylists: College of North West London
Photographer: VR Agency

Published in Gallery