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Pink to make the boys wink. Emilia Wickstead’s signature shade this season was mixed with hues of apricot and tobacco, and came with clusters of beaded embroidery in the shape of a single eye. It was a flirty nod to 1950s femininity.

Exploring ideas of a Park Avenue princess, the collection was inspired by George Cukor’s 1939 flick The Women — in which gossip circulates of a husband’s extramarital affair, in an Elizabeth Arden nail salon. It is about “the modern woman’s no nonsense approach to life,” read the show notes.

Slices of flesh were exposed in cutaway sides or midriffs, and sleeves were slashed on buttoned-up shirt dresses, sexing up somewhat the romantic 1950s tea party silhouettes. Ladylike blouson overcoats came with cape detail in a blown-up geometric print with a sharp, enlarged collar, and saturated florals were mixed in contrasting prints, worn with matching pointed-toe flats.

Moving on from AW15’s shapely tailoring, this season Wickstead offered volume in unexpected places: a puffed sleeve on a dropped shouldered dress, or a curvaceous billow at the back of a gown. Weighty fabrics appeared surprisingly floaty.

Volume can often be tricky to wear, but the Wickstead customer loves her for her ladylike femininity — and this collection was no different. Besides, a puffed sleeve is much more palatable than last season’s PVC — for a lady who lunches, anyway.

For more reports from the shows, go to our fashion weeks page on the FT web app, or visit our London Collections Women SS16 fashion weeks hub on FT.com

Photographs: Catwalking

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