Trend spotting: fashion week season

Trend watchers around the world have been eagerly scrutinising the big Spring/Summer 2013 collections coming off the catwalks in New York, London and Milan so far this September, before rounding up the season in Paris this week

Fashion royalty descended on London last week (14-18 September) to see some of the world’s best designers delight audiences with imaginative runways and catwalk shows. In 2011, Anya Hindmarch gave her coveted accessories brand a lift in her catwalk slot with some theatrical flying confectionary and her latest Pomp & Pleasure collection was delivered with equal gusto on the final day in London. Other true British brands to reveal their creative genius included Burberry, Mulberry and Vivienne Westwood.

Khulood Thani of Dubai-based womenswear marque Bint Thani is one of a number of new talents who launched at London Fashion Week last year. Speaking of the experience, the designer says: “That participation opened many local and international opportunities for Bint Thani, such as my participation as a fashion designer within Dubai Berlin Fashion Festival 2011.

“I come from an environment where art and culture are considered food to the soul and I always wondered how it would feel to translate the books I read, or the metropolitan cities and the exhibitions I attend into fashion and style,” she adds.

Earlier this month in New York the haute couture designers strutting their stuff to the world included Zac Posen, Diane Von Furstenberg and DKNY. Jason Wu, given a boost by Michelle Obama when she wore him on inauguration night, presented a pin-up style woman on the runway this month cutting leather and lace with tulle ball gowns. Richard Chai Love delivered a girlier version of coquette with a collection of pretty, girlish floral prints and fit and flare skirts. An edgier approach to feminity was on show at Helmut Lang’s runway slot with bright colour blocking and prints inspired by a collaboration with tattoo artist Thomas Hooper.

Relative newcomer Noon by Noor, a label beloved of celebrities such as American Kim Kardashian, made its New York debut. The first Gulf fashion house to work the New York week is headed up by Noor Al Khalifa and Haya Al Khalifa, from Bahrain. The cousins blended international and regional influences to create a Spring/Summer 2013 collection that uses a colourful palette in its unabashed pursuit of glamour.

Attentions turned to Milan towards the end of last week as the fashion set sought out the wares of jet-set favourites Gucci, Prada and Roberto Cavalli, before moving on to Paris from 25 September to 3 October. There, leading lights Dior and Saint Laurent are among the most anticipated shows this year. Raf Simons at Dior is known for his architectural pieces worn by actress ambassadors including Mila Kunis and Natalie Portman, and the newly reincarnated Saint Laurent is headed up by Hedi Slimane, known for his sharp tailoring and attention to detail.