London Olympics inspiring figure-hugging fashions
By Michelle Martin
LONDON (Reuters) - As London prepares to host the Olympic Games this summer, fashion designers in the British capital are turning to sport for inspiration, ushering in an era of sleek, figure-hugging dresses and coats which celebrate the female figure.
At London Fashion Week Peter Pilotto and his partner Christopher De Vos sent models sashaying down the runway in tight bright printed velvet and silk dresses slashed with mesh panels, key-hole halters and cut-out bodices reminiscent of swimwear.
"The Olympics will bring a sense of wellbeing, health and activity. This is bound to reflect on sleeker fashion shapes, stronger colors and fitted and sculptured fabrics," Wendy Malem, Director of the Centre for Fashion Enterprise, told Reuters.
The stretchy, slightly shiny material Pilotto and De Vos used to create their sultry dresses with bright yellow, blue and green prints set on a black background evoked sportswear, as did the quilted jackets which featured prominently in their show at a former fish market in central London.
"The puffy jackets are something new for us -- we find it very exciting to mix something very sporty with classic, elegant styles and find this new balance," Pilotto told Reuters backstage after his show.
Serbian-born Roksanda Ilincic took her cue from leisure wear, dressing models in sporty-style baggy hooded sweatshirts tucked into tightly fitting skirts, while Indian designer Ashish Gupta sent models out in hooded sweaters under fitted jackets.
"With a strong feel of athleticism in the air in the lead up to London 2012 Olympics, fashion is having a fitness moment," Wendy Elsmore, Director of the London College of Style, told Reuters.
"Fashion forward styles merge with sportswear influences, resulting in luxurious pieces fusing performance fabrics with feminine styles." she added. Continued...