• Text Jake Hall
  • Photography Emily Malan
  • 15th September 2019

nature’s retaliation

The last few days have seen climate change protestors disrupt London Fashion Week, so it’s fitting that Dilara Findikoglu invited guests into her SS20 lair for a mass ritual to raise awareness of the climate crisis. In a characteristically shamanic venue, decorated with talismanic objects and painted, blood-red peace signs, she showed a collection themed around the four elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water. 

A narrative began to emerge, first of humankind’s destruction of nature, then of nature’s retaliation, and finally of ongoing attempts to find serenity, a solution. Findikoglu was also refreshingly honest about her own desire to work more sustainably, and the attempts she’s made so far: most of the looks were crafted from up-cycled fabrics, or ‘deadstock’ destined either for landfill or incineration.

Aesthetically, the collection was suitably mystical. Satin bandeaus became crimson crucifixes; models’ eyes glimmered underneath black lace veils; wide-brim hats with carefully-distressed edges became nods to witchcraft. Intricate corsets were teamed with bold red, cut-out suits, whereas crinoline-like skirts were draped in red mesh and belted tightly at the waist – all paired with footwear by Roker. 

One of the most common critiques of ‘sustainable fashion’ is its over-reliance on basics. By teaming this new-found emphasis on sustainability with her immersive, extravagant aesthetic, Findigoklu offers hope that protecting the planet doesn’t require the sacrifice of beauty.