Back on sabbatical from his well-established position on the New York schedule, it was interesting to see the newly-acquired polish with which Jonathan Saunders gave his definitive takes on the trends for next spring. Slits and slats of transparency have been everywhere: Saunders opened his show with an aertex-pieced frock, then commenced games with opacity, inserting bands of frosted PVC between dress and hem, or reducing a sleeve to nothing more than a floating cuff. The horizontal was key to this textural contrast, ribbons suspended like Venetian blinds across contrasting dresses, tops and skirts to creat optical effects. Elsewhere, white ruffled chiffon tented more vibrant colours, layered and scissored open across the shoulderblades, then pricked with ruffles (another trend handily picked up). Tailoring, in soft wool with a modernist block-print, came with rounded-off shoulder emphasis, the whole thing coloured in milky Neopolitan ice-cream shades: strawberry, vanilla and lightest chocolate. Alongside ticking these trend boxes, it was interesting to see how Saunders has expanded his original repute and remit as print innovator. The prints in this collection were stand-out (the aforementioned blocking and some body-contouring graphics studded in metal) but they by no means dominated. Indeed, the collection often made its point with the subtle interplay of nothing more than white-on-white in fabric, finish and weight. More's the pity for the dozen or so guests who missed all but Saunder's final half-dozen homecoming outfits.
The collection often made its point with the subtle interplay of nothing more than white-on-white in fabric, finish and weight.