Fashion
  • Text Jake Hall
  • Photography Emily Malan
  • 18th February 2020

Mixed media

There was something undeniably joyous about JW Anderson’s FW20 show, which took traditional clothing proportions and blew them up to cartoonish extremes. The designer is known for his playful, tongue-in-cheek take on fashion, but this season saw his designs become more fantastical than ever: from fuzzy, sculptural dresses to oversized, blanket-like ponchos, his models were cocooned in fabric as they walked the runway.

Inspired by mixed media art, plenty of the looks felt like a new proposition for the innovative designer, which is impressive given his years of experience. This was particularly true of dresses which were almost spherical in shape, with dropped waists and contrasting puffs of material frothing from their hemlines. “I liked this odd, modular shape that we constructed out of circular knits,” said Anderson of the collection’s more architectural silhouettes, hinting at his experimental design process.

Maximalism reigned supreme: from tiger-print flats to chiffon blouses gathered into multiple layers of ruffles, the looks felt like a celebration of dressing up. Even the classic, ankle-length black overcoat was injected with a sense of whimsy, courtesy of circular sleeves which flared out, in, and then out again at the wrist. All in all, it was a master class in chic experimentation from a designer whose reputation shows no sign of waning.