- By Sarah Leigh Wade -
Spanish designer Emilio de la Morena knows his customers intimately. ‘Structural Chic’ is a reoccurring theme for the Central St Martin’s and LCF alumni, but for this season the typical bright colours and sensual flashes of skin were replaced with mean and moody hues and severe proportions.
Morena’s typically calculated approach to design remained evident, with back panels on super-skinny column dresses jutting away from the body and feature seams darting downwards elongating silhouettes. This season patent leather became a focal point, used for bodices and harnesses attached to gowns, cementing a more edgy feel than in previous seasons. Matt leather was also apparent, but softened with precise gathers and supple frills at hems and seen in figure-hugging shifts with contrast colour panels.
Despite starting fairly architecturally, hooded capes seen belted at the waist featuring strict pleats and tucks, the collection softened. Flesh pink and chalky pops of blue provided a warming accompaniment to monochrome, deep petroleum and wine red. A dappled tonal print added interest to high-waisted straight leg pants and skirts while later, hems and seams appeared almost melted in to curvaceous shapes. Further adding feminine touches, each model wore a tiny bow hair accessory, while slouchy ankle socks were paired with booties and chunky cable knits added texture to the otherwise minimal finishes.
Despite this collection being somewhat experimental for Morena, his obvious skill in tailoring and leatherwork has manifested itself in to a collection where the realms of day and evening wear effortlessly merge. Showing versatility too, Morena has again confirmed himself as one of London’s most exciting designers.