There sure are a lot of big empty spaces in the City right now. We visited another one this morning, just down the road from St Paul’s – the one big space in the neighbourhood that still sees guaranteed roaring trade – for Christopher Kane’s first collection following the PPR acquisition of 51% stake in his label. That puts his name next to those of McQueen, McCartney and Saint Laurent not that this seemed to unsettle Kane at all. This also means, by the way, that a Christopher Kane store should be hitting town in the very near future, an event that will lead to the entire fashion industry simultaneously reach an orgasmic climax of such Earth-shattering power life will never be the same again. You’ve been warned. By the time he took his bow there were two questions in everyone’s mind: 1) is he a Zen Master? 2) Can we mine his brain for ideas and energy so we can power the entire globe back up, post-apocalyptic-climax?
He seemed energised, with so much to show and tell and if he wanted us all to sit there, in our designated colour-lit blocks, while he showed us five more stories of looks he made earlier we’d have happily obliged. Take the brilliant camouflage looks that opened the show. With all the patent leather and fuzzy coats around, did you know you actually wanted to wear camo next winter? You do now. Big fur-trimmed buckled bomber jackets sat over mini kilts, a grey ribbed cashmere knit had an open back held together by more leather buckles and a leather-trimmed coat was, simply put, perfect. Burgundy velvet dresses followed with patterns that coiled around and left the skin underneath exposed. Panels of velvet were barely held together by stitching that at times broke to create a rounded curve in the hem of a jacket. That black silk satin trouser suit, by the way, was achingly cool.
As if all this wasn’t enough, feathers came next, delicately fluttering along the seams of little black dresses. A midnight blue pleated mini kilt had each pleat lined with them – the work involved was staggering. The floral appliques that followed seemed like an evolution of previous Kane embellishment (the floral stickers, for example). Jourdan Dunn looked so elegant in a simple knit adorned with them and worn over a sheer pencil skirt. A sheer black tee featured an odd embroidered image that turned out to be that of a brain scan. Of course. This is Kane. Why not? He understands the value of the whimsical, the slightly off-kilter, better than most of his contemporaries (bejewelled pool shoes, anyone?). We’ve seen a lot of fuzzy wool and hairy fur this week but here fuzziness was given the electric shock treatment. The results were witty and fun – Christmas tinsel dresses, basically. And if you didn’t think you wanted one of those well, you do. Trust Kane, he’s a brain doctor.