It’s chaos! It’s anarchic! It’s fantastical! Could it be anything but Matty Bovan? His first show stepping out of the Fashion East circuit, Bovan has had a really impressive amount of buzz and fizz surrounding this show - perhaps the Katie Grand effect, perhaps because Bovan ignites something in the onlooker that few others do. He's got an honest spark of expression and passion.
Bovan certainly let his hair down with this new opportunity. Bass blasted as more, more, more came piling out onto the runway. Tulle skirts were topped with netting, tartans and thick knits - all unkempt and beautiful. British eccentricity came through in Queenie like scarves, tweeds and Chanel suiting with a dishevelled twist. William Morris-esque patterns and tie-dye prints felt ready for a country stroll, as too did the Balaclava which pushed the hair down to splay over the shoulder, as if windswept from a walk on the North Yorkshire Moors - a nod to Bovan’s home county. More personal acknowledgements came through in pearl strings and full-look houndstooth, a homage to Bovan’s grandmother who passed away last year.
Uncompromisingly clashing and powerfully uncouth, Bovan’s designs have already had haute couture whispers about them. I’m not quite convinced that that term is applicable just yet, but there was most definitely an artisanal element to Bovan’s final looks. Full, rich skirts, some splattered with bleach, some labelled with a 'BOVAN' tapestry, were met with gargantuan balloon filled hats by Stephen Jones and added a regal, Marie Antoinette element to the whole offering.
One thinks of Westwood or McQueen when looking at these final pieces, certainly not from a copycat perspective but they have a shared bravery. There was almost a feeling of Isabella Blow about this too. An apocalyptic smorgasbord of tactility and shape coming together. I look forward to seeing what will be buyable in store from this collection, if only to have a piece of Bovan before he ascends beyond my budget.