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18th September 2012

Topshop Unique: The Inside Report

Emma Williams reports everything worth knowing from the Topshop Unique LFW show…

The go-to high street brand that has managed to make a splash in the US, gain a cult celebrity following and faithfully reside in the wardrobes of you and I has exceeded it’s already solid reputation as a fashion heavyweight with its covetable Spring/Summer ’13 collection shown this London Fashion Week.

Sunday afternoon saw a flurry of celebrities and fashion followers eager to see Topshop’s high-end designs for next Summer, and the overhead lit U-shaped catwalk did not disappoint with a wealth of wearable (and covetable) designs.

A surprisingly muted colour palette of nudes, greys and monochrome enveloped the designs, with mere hints of dusky salmon pink and lime-yellow making the collection more of a staple array of designs rather than an ensemble of striking, busy pieces.

If this Unique collection pre-empts the high street’s inclination next Spring then expect to invest in a lot of clean cut, shift pieces and look out for deep-v, slouchy and sheer pieces this winter to transition with ease into next season.

Etched details and patterns applied to the simplistic, tailored fits of the white suits, jumpsuits and dresses on the runway again made for an interesting take on a season that usually sees the same tired floral or Parisian infusions. The delicate and dainty nature of the monochrome tartan-check pattern and criss cross designs seem wearable and oh-so understated: especially when infused with the casual tailoring and slouch fits of the pieces.

My favourite piece has to be a white, loose fit pencil skirt with graduated layers from sheer to solid fabric. With an acknowledging nod to this summer’s explosive sombre trend, the skirt was teamed with a fitted, long-sleeved ‘cold shoulder’ top. It seems that the cut-out has yet to have its day!

The flowing fabrics weren’t the only stand-out detail that fashion journos were hurriedly jotting down. One shoulder details made its mark, along with some the over exaggerated hiked-up sleeves reminiscent of 80s sweats. Cara Delevigne’s sultry attitude in her oversized roll-sleeve cream jacket and matching oversized clutch encompassed the theme of the collection in one strut: understated statement. Letting the clothes speak for themselves was elementary to this collection, as hanging hair was tucked behind ears and eyes were soft and smoky and skin kept fresh.

The ‘it’ piece had to be the slash peekaboo sheer dress that opened the show, modelled impeccably and rather suitably by Topshop muse and ‘it’ model Jourdan Dunn. Displayed in its striking white, tartan and black patch-work styles, this dress was immediately available to customise in the collection’s demure colour palette at Another piece I can see selling out as soon as it hits the rails is the strappy chiffon slouch dress with silver embellished block details that commands attention in an almost celestial way. Already saved in my mental shopping basket.

Fashion’s boldest repped the high street brand at the collection’s showcase; with Olivia Palermo’s flawless appearance including a pair of prerequisite patterned trousers and a bright tee with tan suede swatches. Daisy Lowe, who was inkeeping with the pieces, strutted on the U-shaped catwalk, wearing a red and black criss cross jumper from Topshop Unique.

Topshop Unique’s SS ’13 showcase was as highly anticipated as any other luxury brand this London Fashion Week, and rightly so – the addition of its ‘unique’ and pioneering interactive experience through Facebook, enabling viewers to customise pieces as they appear on the catwalk. Despite the seemingly unattainable experience of witnessing a collection debut at LFW, Topshop (with the help of social networking) has succeeded in making its showcase one of the most seen and spoken about this fashion week.

As well as the camera button that takes pictures of the show and posts them to your Facebook timeline, the option to pre-order the designs and even buy the models’ make-up is available through the Topshop site. Now if that doesn’t make you feel as much of a FROWer as Olivia Palermo and Daisy Lowe, then we don’t know what will.

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