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Experimental feature

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“I wanted it to be calming, to take you to another place,” Jonathan Anderson explained backstage of his tremendous Loewe collection, which had been underscored with a somnambulant hypnoses recording to aid the giving up of smoking. Fashion joke, darlings: what would we exist on at fashion week if not the stale vapours of a dawn-lit cigarette?

Anderson placed his woman in a context; the show space was furnished in a pale carpet, spare black-and-white photographs (by George Platt Lynes) and pieces of mid-century furniture. For Anderson, who always likes to imagine his woman in “real life”, and in “real situations”, his interior meditations have become an essential part of his design process, both here and at his eponymous label for which he won awards for men’s and womenswear design last year. “It’s about curating a woman around the space,” he said. “Curating a look for the real world, and creating the environment and sense of where she might be.”

This real woman was very sophisticated: skirts were mid-calf, asymmetric and knife-pleated, a hit of volume beneath a long, svelte body line which was often cinched with a belt, or contained within leather corsetry. Anderson’s more quirky stylings were brilliantly contained in clever details: a black suede glove slashed into a collapsible lattice, heavy gold link choker necklaces, strings of chain links on a sleeve, and an adorable, but sizeable, lucky cat pendant added intrigue to looks without overwhelming them. One of the latter dresses was made of industrial rubber bands. Meanwhile, the cuts of his soft suede, silk jersey and cotton looks were gentle and becoming. A black three-quarter-length coat draped ever so decorously, while a white gown with a

button-through neck had all the simplicity of a thermal dress.

The bags — and lest we forget, LVMH-owned Loewe is fundamentally a bag business (and one that is gently growing under Anderson’s creative direction) — were big, and strappy, or split in half with zipper details from which a contrast colour section dangled. Most were black or tan, or a combination of the two. Many were in matching fabric, with tufted fringe details — like sofa fabrics or cushion trimming — in keeping with the domestic interior theme. Others were crescent-shaped with heavy metal straps. Some were finished with mink.

Quiet luxury, perfectly straightforward and all very simpatico. “I wanted to design a bag around the woman,” said Anderson. It was an excellent curation.

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