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Sunday, October 1, 2023

London Accessories Designers Work Waste, Crystals Into New Designs – WWD

LONDON — With Simone Rocha’s Crocs collaboration, Uggs on the runway at Ashley Williams and Chopowa Lowena and Piferi’s vogue-ing ball, accessories took center stage during London Fashion Week, which wrapped up on Tuesday.

In addition to launching collaborations, designers expanded their product offerings and showcased their upcycling efforts. Many experimented with different materials or silhouettes, with designs ranging from the subtle to the maximalist.

Chopowa Lowena made its footwear debut this season, joining forces with Ugg.

The brand used the classic boot and Scuffita slipper as a canvas to illustrate the collection, which was inspired by Cornwall’s annual Flora Day Festival, an ancient celebration that heralds the arrival of spring.

The shoes were adorned with bows and covered with metal pins in the shapes of stars, horseshoes and animals.

Ashley Williams also partnered with Ugg, with models wearing classic boot designs in multiple calf heights. The standouts were the tall pink ones with “I (heart) me” plastered all over them.

Ashley Williams RTW Spring 2024

Ashley Williams RTW Spring 2024

Courtesy of Ashley Williams

Rocha’s Crocs collaboration had a feminine spin with the addition of the designer’s signature pearls, crystals and beads.

She worked with the brand’s Siren Clog, and sneaker hybrid style and used a palette of sheer white, black and light pink.

Burberry’s shoes included dazzling mules covered in gold or cobalt blue sparkles, square-toe faux snakeskin loafers, leather toe-thong heels and strappy stilettos adorned with leaves and vines. 

There was also a big belt moment at the show’s finale with a topless male model wearing a wide belt with a big, shiny buckle featuring the the brand’s Equestrian Knight logo.

Burberry RTW Spring 2024

Burberry RTW Spring 2024

Giovanni Giannoni/WWD

JW Anderson’s accessories for spring were witty, playful and bold. They included padded, kitten-heeled moccasins; earth-toned crochet slip-ons, and flat, closed-toe sandals in a variety of hues, including bright orange.

The designer also put a spin on his Bumper bag, which for spring featured raffia weaves and caramel leather trim. 

The brand added a colorful touch to its Corner bag, which debuted last February and is the focus of a new campaign with Charli XCX. 

Stefan Cooke, designed by Stefan Cooke and Jake Burt, unveiled a pre-loved collaboration with Mulberry that featured 27 upcycled pre-owned Mulberry bags. The designers added bows, oversize straps, braided details and slash latticework.

“We love the idea of reworking and refining pre-loved bags, and bringing a new level of history to designs with an exceptional level of craft. It’s amazing to be working with, and being part of a history of a brand that we’ve found aspirational for such a long time. This feels like a real marriage of ideas and a new blueprint in terms of pre-loved design,” said Cooke.

Stefan Cooke x Mulberry

Stefan Cooke x Mulberry

Courtesy of Stefan Cooke x Mulberry

Alfredo Piferi wowed the London Fashion Week crowds with a celebration of his top sellers and signature designs with “The Sunday Mess,” a voguing ball. It was a dance-off by drag personas who were wearing the shoes, which are made for walking — and dancing.  

“Piferi heels always flare at the bottom because I like my individual to walk powerfully and steadily. I don’t like that feeling of wobbling on a very skinny heel,” said the designer. The shoes are made in Italy using vegan materials such as biomass and silk-free satin. 

The brand showcased three shoe models; the Nadja, a sharp, stiletto-heeled boot with a straight shaft; the Hera, an oversize hip boot, and the Rosalia, a sky-high platform recently worn by Shakira and Cardi B at the Video Music Awards.

He worked with materials including denim, metallic gold and silver, and his signature flame pattern. He creates the pattern from 30,000 dégradé crystals, and the shoes are made-to-order.

Malone Souliers staged a Victorian-style presentation showcasing the brand’s signature silhouettes, including slingbacks with satin, corset-style ribbon lacing; mules adorned with bows, and floral canvas wedges.

Ancuta Sarca called her collection “Florii” after a Romanian Easter tradition. The designer said she was reminiscing about her carefree summers in Romania. 

Embellishments included handcrafted flowers made from secondhand Nike trainers. The designer, a committed upcycler, put the flowers on pointed-toe kitten-heel boots and sandals.

Among her designs for spring were pink suede clogs and brown leather knee-high boots with a tortoiseshell finish. She also created a scarlet patent leather shoulder bag.

Sarca collaborated with fellow designer Dion Lee during New York Fashion Week.

“I love his work, I think it’s very feminine and strong and sleek,” said Sarca during her presentation at the New Gen catwalk space at the Old Selfridges Hotel.

“We worked with deadstock garments and end-roll fabrics and made them into shoes. We added my ethos into his sleekness, but it was still very feminine with the heel silhouettes that I always use,” added Sarca.

Ancuta Sarca

Ancuta Sarca

Courtesy of Ancuta Sarca

Helen Kirkum Studio, which creates sneakers out of recycled and waste materials, hosted a presentation titled “cobbled together,” a look at how products and humans live together.

For spring, the brand made its debut in bags and accessories, and offered keyrings made in collaboration with Re=Comb, a brand which makes combs out of recycled plastic.

The new bags included a crossbody made from quilted sneaker tongues; a mini bag made from woven shoelace, and the collaged leather tote bag. 

This season the brand also launched a new footwear silhouette: a slip-on sneaker model which is made out of woven shoelaces and comes in black and white variations. In addition to the leather and suede the brand typically uses, sneakers were made from mesh and canvas. 

Helen Kirkum

Helen Kirkum

Courtesy of Helen Kirkum

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