One never goes to a Vivienne Westwood show expecting revolution. Given she's done decades in the industry, we can forgive her for peddling the same bankable formula season in season out. But for Autumn/Winter 2013 she gave us a revolution of her own kind - a climate revolution. The press release was a call to arms urging us to get involved. 'Climate Revolution is the only means toward a sound economy. When the general public massively switches on to this fact we will win,' she declared.
Fittingly then, she had dressed her models up as bohemian protestors. The layered scarves and war paint wouldn't have looked out of place at St Paul's, while the padded riot gear in graphic hound’s-tooth prints suggested more violent action (as did the battered and bruised faces of the models). The more direct reference to her environmental work came in the face masks and printed toxic skull and cross bones, which gave the impression that her men were off to work in a contaminated lab. To keep us on our toes, these social activists were interspersed with more conservative gentleman in suits, neckties and brogues. Was this a deliberate clash? One side representing the revolutionaries and the others the forces of evil? A cartoon oversized top hat, which seemed to parody the sartorial conventions of the ruling classes, certainly suggested so.
While this season contained no striking variations on Westwood's signatures, there was a fresh energy. Maybe it was the mob mentality. After all, a call to arms as passionate at Westwood's can't help but get you going.