When the Hamptons met the Wild West: Classic British designer Jasper Conran channels pure Americana for his spring/summer collection in London
16:11 GMT, 15 September 2012
He is one of the old guard at London fashion week – indeed, Jasper Conran was designing corsetry when Lady Gaga was still in Pampers. And this season, as with every other, he showed a collection that delighted his ardent fans.
The colourful, playful show, set to a musical backdrop of Janis Joplin, Patti Smith and a brilliant version of Prince's When Doves Cry by The Be Good Tanyas, was pure Americana – and the very embodiment of summer.
Barefoot models strode down a grass runway as Bobby McGee blasted out, while tanned limbs and smooth tanned midriffs were the only accessories for this laid back collection.
Statement maxi dresses were a key part of the Jasper Conran show, including a breezy gingham dress with a full skirt and fluted detail and a navy broderie anglaise dress that set the tone for the show
A patchwork maxi dress is perfect for an uber glamorous picnic or posing on a Hamptons porch
Fabrics were featherlight silk, broderie anglaise, suede, denim and leather, while texture came into play thanks to plenty of appliqu, embroidery and patchwork – and a good dose of sequins, sprinkled liberally on liquid metal dresses or trimming jeans.
Colour was key: orange, hot pink, red – and that olive green we have seen at a number of shows already – with a dash of nautical stripes toughened up with Conran's ever present black.
The vibe was largely inspired by Patti Smith, Conran said after the show. 'I was listening to a lot of Patti Smith, and Janis Joplin too, when I designed this collection,' he said.
'It started off a lot butcher, I can tell you that much.
'There were a lot of trousers. Then I smoothed it out and it just developed, like a butterfly.'
Nautical colours added a preppy edge to the laid back collection
The show had a garden party feel, with models walking in bare feet down an astroturf catwalk
Cute cherry prints and decorated denim were young and playful
Next summer is all about wearable T-shirt style dresses and simple sequined slips in rainbow colours for the Jasper Conran girl
front row, which included Jodie Kidd (in hot pink Conran), Lady
Victoria Hervey and Christine Bleakley, were suitably impressed.
'It is my favourite show so far,' said Hervey when the lights went up.
'I loved the whole theme. The grass, the music – it was so well put together. It was bright, colourful – I loved it,' she said.
Fellow front row guest Jodie Kidd admitted there wasn't a piece she wouldn't wear.
'I grew up doing Jasper's shows, so it's just wonderful to see him grow and grow,' she said.
'It was so wearable, so relaxed – no shoes, no bras.
'There wasn't a piece I wouldn't have in my wardrobe.
'He is just getting better and better.'
Jodie Kidd and Christine Bleakley were front row to support their friend Jasper
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