It’s time to re-purpose a picnic hamper as a handbag, swot up on the latest Antwerp design talent and strike a pose, as the world’s fashion press heads to Somerset House for five days of shows, schmoozing and street-style one-upmanship.
This year, there’s more to look forward to than ever before, from blockbuster shows by Burberry and Christopher Kane to talent-spotting at Fashion East and Central Saint Martins’ MA showcase. The hottest ticket of AW15 has to be Gareth Pugh, who’s returning to home turf after seven years at Paris Fashion Week – and is probably the closest thing we have to an Alexander McQueen heir. The one-time Time Out cover star is known for catwalk showmanship, so whatever he has planned, you can expect something weird but very wonderful. We’re also gearing up for some serious star spotting. Will the London crowd be graced with the caterwauling of baby North West? Only time will tell.
If not one designer has deemed you worthy of a front row (or even back row) ticket, don’t despair – there are plenty of ways you can get in on the action, even if you don’t have billions of Instagram followers or your own reality TV franchise.
The next generation of fashion talent will be out in force at MA15, a boundary-pushing showcase of clothes, accessories, film and photography from London College of Fashion’s graduate cohort. Work by this lot could be hanging in your wardrobe before the decade’s out.
Topshop will once again be streaming their Unique show – which kicks off on Sunday at 3pm – at the colossal Oxford Circus branch, where you’ll be able to cheat a front row view without the fashion politics. Always ahead of the curve when it comes to tech, the high street giant is also letting you shop via Twitter during LFW. Burberry will be streaming its show, too, and if you’re shopping at Westfield on Monday evening you’ll be able to watch the Hunter show on gigantic digital screens. Or if you can’t face leaving the sofa, you can watch all the good stuff here.
A hook-up between the British Council and the British Fashion Council, the International Fashion Showcase brings together clothes by 130 designers from 30 countries around the world. In Brewer Street’s car park-slash-exhibition space, you’ll find style showcases from each participating country.
Eat some popcorn
Seriously, the main artery between Somerset House and the Freemason’s Hall in Covent Garden (home to talent incubator Fashion Scout) is crawling with people desperate to supply you with bags of low-calorie, fashion-y snacks. You’re in for a treat, if you actually like coconut water.
Prettify your pet
Fashion moved beyond self-parody a long time ago, so we weren’t at all surprised to learn that Somerset House will host a pop-up dog grooming salon this season. After all, everyone who’s anyone is toting some sort of statement pooch these days, whether it’s a teacup pug or a bulldog – see Cara at Mulberry’s SS14 show. The Swatch Pooch Parlour will be offering pedicures and blow dries for the fashion crowd’s furry friends.
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By Katie Rosseinsky