• Caz McKinnon

Highlights from Rocky Star, LFW AW18

For another in depth look at one of London Fashion Week’s headliners I thought we’d talk a bit about Rocky Star who presented their new collection at the Free Mason’s Hall this last fashion week. Rocky Star is known in the fashion industry as being reliable when it comes to playful, rich collections filled with diverse textures, colours and materials. He is also praised by the press as bringing a new wave to the industry by simultaneously creating clothes for A-listers such as Beyoncé and Nicole Sherzinger, but also designing clothes that the high street buyer can afford.

His inspiration is routed in his Indian heritage and this collection was no different in terms of playing with fashions inspired by both the east and west. The colours that dominated were seductive purples, deep blues and glamorous burgundies and golds. We also saw an abundance of leather, silk, sequins, chiffon and a lot of fringing and beading. There was a distinct feeling of glamour among the pieces, emulating a timelessness that is akin to the thoughts behind fusion fashion's intentions. However the collection also remains very wearable. Many of the pieces would look perfectly at home on a girl's night out in Soho.

Among my highlights of the collection was a gold, floor length dress with a carved waist that revealed a tasteful display of skin and was clarified by a thin, silver satin band accented by a matching gold pattern. Both the hem and the wrists were feathered brown and silver, complimented by brown accenting and subtle fringing. Among Michael Halpern, Dee by Dalia, and Ashish Gupta, Rocky Star seems intent on playing with the current trend of sequins that's been appearing on the runway so frequently; in this case it is the intricate beadwork and bright gold sequins that really make the piece pop.

Another notable piece was this knee length evening gown that had a tightly fitted V neck top and comparatively loose bottom finished with a pomplum train remindful of looks found on the red carpet during this year's awards season. The gown was a deep plum and lilac mix with a subtle marbled pattern. It's evocative of the soft watercolors found in Monet's painting of lily pads, playing with the layers of classic femininity. But what really made this design stick out was actually the striking bead work sequinned pattern meticulously crafted into the outline of the v neck and culminating almost like a center piece in the core of the dress, like a loving embrace of a woman’s sloping curves.

Some pieces that were also showcased were made precisely for the fearless 'bad bitch' who isn’t afraid to rock bold looks: an example is this short hemmed, sequin dress with a bandeau cut. The beadwork is extremely intricate and is inspired by traditional eastern textiles. The look was coupled with a clashing, textured pair of semi opaque tights with a mix of different patterns in light pink, pale white and purple. The metallic chunky boots that the outfit was paired with also sent a down to earth message, mixing evening wear with casual in an interesting way. This outfit is not for the faint-hearted but incredibly sexy and what seemed like quite a decided celebration of the confident woman.

In all the collections I was able to catch during London Fashion Week, this one stood out as the most fearless. The "celebration of femininity" is one of those hot buzzwords you read all the time in press releases and while it is certainly broadly explored as a concept on the runway, it does not always feel as central to other collections as it does with Rocky Star's. Between the celebration of classic, Hollywood glamour contrasted with more demure pieces, this collection proved to be an exciting, different one that was distinctly female positive. Overall, one of the better collections we've seen from LFW AW18.

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Douglas Carsson is an American artist based in Bristol and today we had a conversation about his work, inspiration and things that are going on in the world. How are you? I'm really good. Just gearin