Cara Delevingne opened the Mulberry SS14 show at London Fashion Week
Over the years Emma Hill has turned Mulberry into a quintessential English brand and there was nostalgia in the air on Sunday morning as the elite of the fashion industry, from editors to buyers and celebrities, pooled into Claridge’s for Hill’s final show as creative director. The show invitations, a miniature Wedgwood teacup and saucer, were a delightful precursor for the English country theme that was in store for the show. Claridges was resplendent, elegantly draped in roses, moss and ivy setting the scene for Hills swan song.
The show was a celebration of great British heritage with a suitably girlish twist. The Mulberry staples were ever present, slouchy pyjama pants, blouses and beautifully constructed coats, but most hotly anticipated in show were the bags. There are few houses where the accessories are more hotly awaited than the clothes, but Mulberry has always been first and foremost a producer of fine leather goods. Having brought us cult classics such as the Alexa and the Del Ray, Hill did not disappoint, sharply updating existing classics such as the Bayswater and introducing the Kensal and Willow shoulder bags.
Cara Delevingne opened the show in a molten silver daisy jacquard coat with matching culottes, an adorable white shirt embossed with floral motifs with a coordinating jacquard Willow clutch held against her body. The white on white florals continued into slouchy summery trousers and floaty dresses, with the jacquard persisting in bustiers, structured t-shirts, short-sleeved jackets and for great British eccentrics, even a little bulldog’s outfit to match. Soft, striped t-shirt tunics floated over matching culottes and skirts in peach and powdered blue, first in chiffon and then buttery suede, giving an edge, with beautiful matching striped Bayswater’s clasped in hand. Prints appeared, also floral but with a beautiful hand rendered and abstract element to them, lending a touch of idiosyncrasy to classic Mulberry silhouettes of wide sleeved blouses and billowy trousers. Dresses were abundant, and desirably so, with translucent chiffon stripes overlaying print, embroidered and sequinned motifs and embossed florals, in simple, easy to wear shapes. In other hands the concept ran the risk of becoming a touch twee, but Hill balanced the quirky femininity of the collection with classic well cut staples.
One of our favourite looks was an all orange ensemble compromising an oversized yet structured shirt with a simple skirt, poppers down the center of the blouse and side of the skirt the only embellishment and the navy shirt with matching trousers, in an imprinted silk print, the perfect combination of eccentricity and chic.
In a fabulous gesture, the show ended with the English institution that is a splendid afternoon tea leaving attendees in no doubt that despite a change in creative hands the brand will remain steeped in its heritage, Hill having firmly set it on its course.
Check out Your Coffee Break’s exclusive video on Cara Delevingne at London Fashion Week SS14: