6 London Fashion Week Designers To Know
London has always had a reputation for fashion-forward designers and avant guarde labels. From Dame Vivienne Westwood to the inimitable Alexander McQueen, the list of legends and icons that call the city home is staggering. Plus, with Central Saint Martins producing some of the most influential new emerging designers out there, it's no surprise that London's fashion industry has a historic impact, both young and old. Remember when Christopher Kane and Gareth Pugh hit the scene and reinvigorated London Fashion Week in 2007?
Each season there’s always someone new in London that makes us rethink our minimalist wardrobes. We’ve rounded up a few of our current faves – a few under the radar designers and a couple established standouts. From Rejina Pyo’s street style takeover on the likes of Pandora Sykes to Steven Tai's continued influence, these are the names to know in contemporary fashion.
Originally from Korea and now based in London, Rejina Pyo has the eye of an artist and the stylistic authority of a friend you’d trust to help you break out of a style rut (while still feeling like yourself). She cut her teeth as a designer in the studio of Roksanda Ilincic after graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2011 before a few well-deserved accolades helped her strike out on her own. Her collections are full of playful, yet elegant statement pieces that play well with others, melting effortlessly into your existing wardrobe.
In just a few years this Vancouver-born, London-based designer has made an impressive mark on the fashion industry. Steven Tai's quirky-cool statement pieces have a tailored nuance that works perfectly alongside his knack for mixed-media whimsy. He launched his eponymous label in 2012 after working with such heavyweights as Viktor & Rolf and Stella McCartney and graduating from, yes, Central Saint Martins. Just a year later Yohji Yamamoto was awarding him an award at the prestigious Hyères Festival. These are pieces you will keep in your archive for a long, long time.
This Parisian-born designer is yet another graduate from London's Central Saint Martins but has found her unique USP as a champion in the sustainable fashion movement. Faustine Steinmetz began her own label after acquiring her first handloom. Her first collection featured handwoven denim, which she creates using the unpicked threads from old jeans, and it wasn't until just last year that she incorporated a wider range of pieces. Of course our boutiques fell for them immediately. Her early influence working in the studios of Jeremy Scott and Henrik Vibskov is easy to spot in her love of color and unexpected details.
MHL by MARGARET HOWELL
Margaret Howell has been a household name in the British fashion industry ever since her debut in 1970. She originally found inspiration in a men's button up shirt and has since become renowned for her detail-driven, modern tailoring that is made to last. But it's the designers contemporary off-shoot, MHL by Margaret Howell, that has our attention. Approachable price points, closet necessities for both women and men, and the kind of relaxed, timeless jackets and trousers that we can wear anywhere.
Doing extraordinary things with faux fur and outerwear is just one of the selling points of this emerging fashion label. Hannah Weiland launched the line in 2013 and takes inspiration from modern art and the playful nature of pattern and texture. Basically she can do anything you can think of in fashion design with the softest, plush faux fur. Think wild prints and illustrations in bold hues. Lucky for us her collections now include some ready to wear and accessories, so bookmark this designer. Hannah Weiland is just getting started.
Two generations of denim manufacturing expertise can't be wrong. Drawing on a long history of influence, London-based Wåven injects the kind of Scandinavian and Japanese minimalism we love into each and every denim jacket, dress and pair of jeans they create. Plus the accessible price point makes it easy to stock up on their denim essentials. Look for unisex kimonos and refined denim button ups that will go with almost anything and everything in your wardrobe.