Report By Heath Brown Photography by Tom Sloan
Judging from the mood board lining the wall of the Isa Arfen studio at a rare sneak preview, today’s collection is all about London’s 80s club days.
“It’s an encounter between New Romantics and European aristocrats,” says Serafina Sama (right), the Italian designer behind Isa Arfen who has staked out a new cool-lady aesthetic in the fashion sphere. “Like a French aristo who has sneaked out to party at [London’s] Blitz Club.”
Mixing luxurious fabrics and textures with simple shapes, the collection is modern in cut but retro in influence. “The Blitz Club era was all about dressing up as a way of escapism,” says Sama. “So much is going on in the world that is so disturbing, depressing and sad – at first it felt frivolous to be designing fashion, so I decided to embrace an idea of escapism to cope with the frivolity.
“These days, every collection has such a short lifespan that it might as well be fun,” the designer continued. “It’s all about living for the day, or in this case, the night.”