So this is why see-now-buy-now is a good thing
Topshop Unique has been associated with a ‘shop the runway’ strategy since 2012, when the mega-brand first made their collections available to pre-order from a livestream of the show. Today, they joined a growing trend for presenting a ‘seasonless’ collection that is instantly shoppable.
Like Tom Ford AW16, Ralph Lauren’s September Collection and Tommy Hilfiger AW16 in New York, and Burberry’s see-now-buy-now show in London, Topshop has eschewed the traditional six month time lag to sell the clothes shown at fashion week. Indeed, as the Topshop models took their finale walk the collection was unveiled – merchandised to perfection – in the window of the Oxford Street flagship and on Topshop.com.
Presented in Spitalfields Market in East London, the clothes befittingly referenced ‘the heyday of London’s fashion markets in the Eighties’, according to the show notes; think liquidy vinyl skirts, slinky slip dresses slashed to the thighs, oversized stone washed denim jackets and lashings of neon.
Here’s everything you need to know about one of LFW’s most talked about shows…
The front row
The front row was filled with über-cool, rising stars Anais Gallagher and Lottie Moss (though big sis Kate was absent for the first time in years), and models Arizona Muse and Erin O’Connor.
If its not fuchsia pink or zebra print forget it – or so appears to be the motto at Topshop HQ this season. The collection was inspired by the montage artwork of Manchester-born punk pin-up artist Linder Sterling (a favourite reference among fashion designers from Richard Nicoll to JCDC). With this in mind, creative director Kate Phelan took the brand back to its rebellious roots with a series of mesh-heavy LBDs made for going out-out; wear them with hot pink pumps and oversized statement earrings. Alternatively, ruffled-blouses, boiler suits slung low and tied at the waist or peg-leg vinyl trousers are the recommended daywear choices.
Current campaign girl Taylor Hill kicked things off, wearing what was later revealed to be one of the 31 items now for sale: a silky, funnel neck blouse in an 80s windbreaker silhouette with a navy and black zebra print and chevron pattern, which at £145 is sure to be a speedy sell-out. Faces-of-the-moment Lineisy Montero and Stella Maxwell were quick to follow in various iterations of the club kids collection.
Now that you’ve seen it, can you actually buy it all now?
Not exactly – some pieces on your wishlist may have to wait a month or two. The collection is a mix of autumn/winter 2016, which is ready to shop now, and pre-spring/summer 2017, which will arrive in stores in November. With most catwalk collections, usually only about 30% of it ends up in stores as designers take their cues on which pieces to make a full run of from the press coverage on particular items and the pieces chosen by the store buyers – this is why the see-and-shop model is so revolutionary.
Scroll on for our top picks of pieces you can buy now: