Yesterday Burberry presented their Spring 2016 collection at London Fashion Week. Set in a custom-built venue in Kensington Gardens, the brand entertained attendees with a runway show, live performance and online shopping experience. With over 1000 guests, the front row was filled with names like Anna Wintour, actors Benedict Cumberbatch, Chay Suede, Naomie Harris, Guey Lun Mei, Mélanie Laurent, Sun Li, Miriam Yeung, Liu Wen; musicians Annie Clarke (St Vincent), Rhodes, Paloma Faith, Tinie Tempah, Gabriel Day-Lewis and Yulia; and Burberry campaign stars like Kate Moss, Jourdan Dunn, Suki Waterhouse, Cara Delevingne, Sienna Miller, Clara Paget, Holliday Grainger, Amber Anderson, Oscar Tuttiett, Harry Treadaway and Tom Odel.
For the Functionregalia Collection, Christopher Bailey was looking for a balance between function and regalia, hence the collection’s name. Using a military motif, pieces were hand-embroidered or used a metallic cording for trim, while blazers and accessories were trimmed in epilates. Macramé, silk and lace was popular again this season with dresses, shirts and skirts coming in the romantic fabrics, some with flower appliques others accented with netting or sheer panels. A punk vibe was also felt throughout the collection with skinny pants, well-placed buckles, chains and mesh.
Models walked the runway to Alison Moyet’s live performance dressed in a neutral palette of black, white, navy, gold, cream and nude. The silhouette was slim, but comfortable, with skirts and dresses given a little flair and movement at the ends. A few pieces, given their shape, gave the collection a bit of a ‘90s appeal. On their own these pieces were fun and fashion-forward, but together the collection felt a bit mismatched—on-trend lace fit-and-flare dresses came out after lacey nightgown-inspired dresses, which were followed by military blazers. Individually it was beautiful. Together it lacked direction, something that normally, Bailey is very good at.
Despite being leagues ahead of their contemporaries, Burberry keeps pushing forward with technology and social media, this time creating the first Snapchat show the night before the collection was presented, just to give fans a sneak peek of what would be seen on the runway. They also included a glimpse into their design studios and Snapchatted Anna Wintour receiving her invitation as well as the arrival of guests and celebs to the red carpet. The also created a 24-hour Snapchat Live Story where they covered crowd-sourced images from the show so their followers could see it all. In addition to Snapchat the show was shared over Burberry.com. YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google+, LINE, Sina Weibo, Pinterest, YouKu, Kakao, Sephora and WeChat.
If shoppers saw something they had to have during the brand’s runway show, they could purchase it immediately though Runway Made to Order. While most people have to wait months to sport the designs coming down the catwalk, Burberry made a selection of accessories, handbags and outerwear available immediately. The program is open until October 5, so if you need one of the new alligator belt bags, order it online stat or run into your local Burberry.