Streets ahead

Tuesday 20 September 2011


photography by shaniqwa jarvis
report by Julia robson

LFW has grown up so much, it’s rare and refreshing to come across designers who remind you why this city is way ahead of the curve, especially in that very London thing, street trends.

Two designers “keeping it real” yesterday were Louise Gray and Nasir Mazhar, who will have proved the highlight of the week for fashion spies seeking out new influences.

At the Topshop Show Space at the Old Eurostar Terminal in Waterloo, Gray was punk to Mazhar’s hip-hop.

Grays’ first big show outing showed how well her  “London look” clothes stood up to catwalk scrutiny. But it was the raw, undiluted cool of Mazhar, who brought along his tribe of fit boys and girls from London’s cultural hotspots (Stratford, Dalston, Brixton) to model his headgear – signature box-peak Bully caps in mismatched animal prints, takes on the African turban and a hyper-bright hijab – that nailed the cultural mash up that supplies London, and genuine Londoners like Mazhar, with endless ideas.

This season he added bags to his hats, inspired by the music genre, grime. “Grime is the last subculture in England,” announced Mazhar. “People dress in a certain way. They talk in a certain way. It comes from the London streets.” Directly to the LFW catwalk.

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