Fashion
  • Text Aïsha Diomandé
  • Photography Joe Harper
  • 9th June 2017

Arts & crafts

Echoing previous collections, construction was an essential element at Phoebe English SS18 as the London-based designer crafted an intricate balance between imagination and practicality.

Realism was at the heart of the collection, the pieces presented in their simplest state against a white backdrop. A sense of mindfulness towards functionality over excess decoration was evidenced in the use of natural fibres, which grounded an artistic design in nature. This down-to-earth approach towards the act of creation was embodied by the models, who were busily making handmade pottery. This kind of crafty focus is far from new for Phoebe – just look back to her SS17 MAN presentation, which saw models sitting together, quietly sewing. By uniting the everyday with art, she spotlights process, creation, and the freedom of being. 

The image of the creative worker was emphasised by the loose-fitting but structured pieces, pure in concept and function. Bi-sectional colour patching in varying shades of blue featured heavily, as the oversized external seams gave structure to the jackets. A nautical influence infused the collection, with the appearance of Breton stripes and cotton ropes, whilst light blues and forest greens accented the neutral palette. This simple aesthetic illustrates an enduring respect towards craftsmanship, while a sensitive consideration towards shape and texture embodies a philosophy celebrating accessibility and innovation.