Leather and lace proved a killer combination at Jason Wu, where the designer renowned for outfitting the First Lady went against his signature aesthetic opting – rather surprisingly – for dominatrix over demure. Heavily influenced by the recent Helmut Newton retrospective at the Grand Palais in Paris, Wu sent out a provocative collection of tough-chic day and evening wear featuring lingerie detailing (thanks to a collaboration with lingerie giant la Perla) and leather harnesses – just the fare one might expect to see in Newton’s heady black and white images from decades past.
It was a bold move for a young designer that has successfully built a brand around conventional red-carpet ready looks – and yet, the primarily nude and black collection was an undisputed hit from the first risqué black leather body-con dress, donned by none other than the radiant Carolyn Murphy. Impeccably tailored stove-pipe trousers, sleek jumpsuits and backless apron dresses demanded attention, as did the flurry of sculpted two-tone pink and black ensembles, but it was the floor-sweeping finale gowns – shimmering, backless, full-skirted and complete with fetish-like harnesses – that stole the show. Wu’s daywear may have graduated from ultra-feminine to ultra-sexy this season, but happily his knock-out eveningwear is as show-stopping and all-out glamorous as ever.