London designers call upon Shakespeare, nature for inspiration

Mon Feb 22, 2016 5:09pm EST
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By Li-mei Hoang

LONDON (Reuters) - London's fashion designers on Sunday drew inspiration ranging from nature to William Shakespeare, presenting oversized coats and embellished dresses while reassessing how to sell clothes faster to a new generation of online consumers.

Pleated skirts, rose-printed dresses and studded leather jackets, in saffron and tangerine, were seen at British fashion brand Mulberry, which returned to the catwalk for the first time after two turbulent years.

Models sported a variety of accessories, from a tiny lifelike heart to oversized totes, which designer Johnny Coca said had been inspired by the works of Shakespeare and the streets of London.

Coca said the collection was important to help shape the style of Mulberry's new offering, but accessories would remain his main priority in the year to come, after an attempt to become more exclusive backfired.

"I'm really focused on all the categories, but the bulk of our business (is) in our accessories, which is why we are working a lot on that," Coca told reporters backstage after the show.

Mulberry Chief Executive Officer Thierry Andretta said in a recent interview that many of its new products would be available after the show and some within a few weeks, sooner than the traditional four to six months.

His comments come as fashion brands are trying to find ways of getting clothing and accessories to customers more quickly in different climates around the world.

"Slowly, slowly, there is definitely going to be a move," said designer Anya Hindmarch, whose lively catwalk show featured a life-sized gaming grid and handbags bearing Pac Man motifs.   Continued...

A model presents a creation at the Alexander McQueen catwalk show at London Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2016 in London, Britain February 21, 2016. REUTERS/Neil Hall