We teetered up the stairs of an old warehouse by the Oxo Tower to see Edeline Lee present her AW17 collection, entranced by the piano player on the Baby Grand and tipsy on the free rum. Femininity is always an issue in fashion but for AW17 Edeline Lee opened a new conversation – the Future Lady; what’s her context, what does the future hold. The collection played with a ladylike edge – prim and proper tailoring, classic silhouettes – but paired with bare skin or overlaid with shapes that made it impossible to forget the body underneath. Dada-esque distortions were frequent – vastly oversize sleeves, awkward crops, structureless shoulders, asymmetric cuts; even the fabric had something to say – from a distance it seemed one single smooth swathe but get up close and each piece was a texture of tiny circles.
Bows and buckles combined with magnetic buttons brought classic details together with innovative and new. The colour range was almost primary but shades of gray, mint and black kept that at bay. Some of the models seemed only half made up, as if the Future Lady muse was undecided as to whether or not to conform to imposed perfections. This may also have been the influence of collection inspiration Hannah Hoch, a Dadaist collage artist renowned for stacking shapes and embracing the witty mockery of materialism of the movement. The designer said, “I was inspired by how Hoch’s work concurrently addressed issues of female identity and her historical context.” We say, a thoughtful and precise collection with a wonderfully textural feel and a satisfying depth.
Images shot for us by Theo Williams.