Report by Julia Robson
To have, or not to have a narrative? That became the question in New York, where Alexander Wang and Victoria Beckham emphatically stressed that, no, they did not have a starting point, or inspiration.
Not strictly true. There was inspiration aplenty. But when pushed to name one, Beckham pointed out that whatever her collection might look like, the most important aspect was whether we liked it.
Liking is not just at the heart of whether a collection appeals, it’s also what drives inspiration today. “Virtual research is what’s changed things,” says the BFC’s Sophia Neophitou-Apostolou. Especially for millennial designers who have grown up on snatch and screengrab. Gone are lengthy research trips, now its all Google image search. So what if it’s rife with mis-tagged images. You like it? Reference it.
Day One of London saw modern collections born out of this creative chemistry. The 50 or so words on the neon-pink shownotes of Fyodor Golan (Maximalist_Geisha_Raw Edges_Giftwrapping…) spelled out the thought and research process that went into producing the collection. “We live in a fragmented world,” said the designers post show.
“Not knowing where an idea is going to take you or what you’ll find is what makes for an exciting design experience,” ’fessed Eudon Choi, whose discovery of a macabre John Fitzgerald fairy painting led to a thought process that drew “weird similarities” with 90s catwalk waifs.
So there’s narrative, but not as we know it. Like it, if you like.