British designer Vivienne Westwood called for a “climate revolution” as she presented a relatively tame but nonetheless punk-edged spring-summer collection on day three of London Fashion Week.
In the grandiose setting of Britain’s Foreign Office the flamboyant redhead took to the catwalk on Sunday as a climate change campaigner, sporting a moustache and a black circle painted round her eye.
Wearing a sequined hat and wrapped in a banner proclaiming “climate revolution”, the 71-year-old unfurled herself to reveal a t-shirt bearing the same message and pink striped shorts with tights pulled over them.
The eccentric designer also had something to say about the row over topless photos of Prince William’s wife Catherine, published last week in French magazine Closer.
She said: “They have to protect their privacy somehow because if they don’t do it now, then it’s a total free-for-all.
“They probably don’t care at all really.
“Once I got an OBE and I didn’t have any knickers, and the Queen loved it.”
By comparison, the spring-summer collection of Westwood’s second line, Red Label, seemed almost sensible.
Drawing from diverse styles, models’ faces were made up like Andy Warhol prints, while judges wigs alternated with fifties-inspired hairstyles.
Straw boater hats and feminine twinsets in pastel colours formed part of a “royal gardens” theme while monochrome cocktail dresses and jumpsuits made for an edgier evening wear range.
“Before we’ve had class war, we’ve had rich against poor, do you know what the division is now? It’s idiots against eco-warriors. That’s it,” said Westwood before the show as she took up the mantle of climate change champion.
Meanwhile the atmosphere was calmer at Nicole Farhi’s show on Sunday which featured a mineral-toned collection inspired by the marble quarries of Carrara in northern Italy.
In the art deco setting of the Royal institute of British Architects, watched by influential American Vogue editor Anna Wintour, the French designer expressed her passion for sculpture with elegant dresses structured by angular hips or origami-like folds.
With a palette dominated by white, Farhi’s collection explores the subtle nuances of the Siena landscape, from ivory to pale yellow and pearl grey.
Her fabrics, often rigid as paper, are silky and transparent for a blouse or sleeveless top, while shiny and fluid for a trench coat.
A sprinkling of shimmering crystals evokes the sheen of marble and sets off the simplicity of the lines.
Among other shows on Sunday Temperley London struck a resounding 1950s chord with their retro silhouettes, dominated by pale blue shades and full, flirty skirts made of organza and satin.
These were accessorised with sunglasses or a straw hat, sometimes livened up with a veil resembling a mosquito net.
British designer Alice Temperley said she liked to create a “timeless” mixture of different influences but had in mind images of models from the fifties or a young Sohpia Loren.