For Sabinna Rachimova, her 'brand DNA' is, actually, familial. It transcends ethos and aesthetics and runs deep into the past, through two generations of her family. Her grandmother, a maths and physics professor in her native Russia, who during communist times made clothing on the side for neighbours and friends for extra income, inspired her to pursue a career in art and craft.
It's brave for a designer to be so gobby, especially with the pressure of commercial sales targets and constant burden of turning a profit and keeping the wheels turning, but Shannon's line of thoughtful and clever sloganeering is somewhat proven, with his current and previous collections bearing a corruption of Sports Direct as "Lovers Direct" and "Haters Direct", currently in store at Selfridges
Professor Frances Corner, Head of London College of Fashion opened the 3rd annual Kering Talk with the comment that when LCF moves to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in 2020, all the faculties and facilities will be under one roof, giving the students and teaching staff "literally the space to think".
'Fashion comes from Eastern Europe' - the newest trend that has been picked up by major fashion publications and editors lately. 'Eastern Bloc', 'New Eastern Europe', 'post-Soviet' - these references have been spreading around fashion (and beyond) titles from Vogue to WGSN, to The Guardian, to fashion bloggers like a virus of a cool factor.
We kept our eyes glued to the Central-East European selection (can't blame - this is what we do) and the selection was pretty visually pleasing, with the Czech Republic at the centre of attention. My humble guess was that the first prize for the best Country representation this year will come back to Europe, Central Europe, Czech Republic, and my prediction was correct.
During the presentations at Elms Lesters Painting Rooms there was time to be consumed by the building and the designer's visual storytelling. Not having show notes to read through while sitting, waiting for a show to start means no advance intro to the clothing and seasonal theme, however a presentation offers less pretence and puts the experience above all else.
Kevin is bold. Immediately I get the sense he is telling me his story. The real one. Not the image-conscious one covered in a veneer of glossy hindsight bias. Kevin tells me straight - "I don't think the story behind the clothes has to be important". He doesn't feel the need to make anything up - verbally or sartorially.