It was a case of location, location, location at London Fashion Week this season. The biggest news was, of course, the British Fashion Council’s decision to move its main show space from tents outside Somerset House to the Art Deco Brewer Street Car Park in Soho, which brought the shows ‘closer to retail’, said its chief, Caroline Rush.
Across town, many a storied landmark was commandeered for the occasion. Here we bring you the highlights, from historic buildings dripping in gilt to concrete subterranean lairs.
BFC show space
Light poured in through the trussed roof of Soho’s 1929 Brewer Street Car Park – designed by architect JJ Jonas – which served as the official home of London Fashion Week this season. Showgoers could also take a breather in the adjacent BFC lounge, designed by The Store, with furniture by the likes of Ettore Sottsass and Pierre Jeanneret.
Roksanda returned to the Grade II-listed Seymour Leisure Centre – originally designed in 1930s by Kenneth Cross – for its Spring Summer 2016 show, produced by Blonstein. Set designer Gary Card lined the runway with modular MDF structures, while Nick Gray used stage lighting to cast bright colours over the space.
Production designer Michael Howells built a Memphis-style set inside the Sky Garden, atop Rafael Viñoly’s Walkie Talkie.
Angular mirrors and blue panels brought the London sky into the tented show space of Jonathan Saunders, outside Central Saint Martins.
Monochrome magic inside the Burberry show space in London’s Kensington Gardens.
House of Holland
The subterranean Collins Music Hall – hidden beneath Islington Green – provided a concrete backdrop to Henry Holland’s latest collection.
Simone Rocha opted for the gilt surrounds of St James’ Lancaster House – a Grade I-listed, 19th century building now in the hands of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
A sea-blue runway swept across the atrium floor of the Central Saint Martins campus – housed in a former granary and two transit sheds, overhauled by Stanton Williams in 2011. Katrantzou charged Bureau Betak with producing its temporary fashion week makeover.
Smithfield Market – the UK’s largest wholesale meat market – provided a succulent setting for Julien Macdonald.
The gleaming white Versus Versace runway in Bloomsbury’s Victoria House also came courtesy of My Beautiful City, who recessed lights into the arches for added drama.
Topshop show space
Topshop chose the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in Westminster for its show line-up, which included Osman, who planted a lone tree at the end of the catwalk.