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London Fashion Week Day 2: Sequins, retro looks, Cinderella

A model wears an outfit by designer Gareth Pugh during his Autumn/Winter 2015 show at London Fashion Week, in London, Saturday, Feb. 21,2015. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

A model wears an outfit by designer Gareth Pugh during his Autumn/Winter 2015 show at London Fashion Week, in London, Saturday, Feb. 21,2015. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

LONDON (AP) — London Fashion Week entered Day 2 on Saturday, featuring dozens of new designs — from dramatic, conceptual creations by Gareth Pugh, to more wearable pieces by Julien Macdonald and Emilia Wickstead.Here are some highlights from the day:



Julien Macdonald isn’t one to skimp on glamour, but this season he’s dialed up the glitz even more with inspiration from some of Britain’s most celebrated treasures.

The designer, who sent his army of models down the runway in dozens of slinky, brazenly sexy gowns and evening dresses, said he took inspiration from a trip to the Tower of London and its collection of crown jewels.

“There’s diamonds, rubies, amethyst, gorgeous jewels covered in very rich, saturated colors,” he said after the show.

The barely-there dresses came in emerald green, peacock blue, hot fuchsia and silver – all skin-tight and adorned with lace, sequins and tassels. The outfits were accessorized with long, shiny black gloves, gladiator heels and mules, as well as lips lacquered in a fierce shade of purple.

Show-stopping looks included a silver fishtail gown dripping in sequins and a lipstick red silk jacket, loosely wrapped around a sheer cocktail dress.

That pop of red may be inspired by the theatrical art display of poppies surrounding the Tower of London last year to mark the centenary of World War I. Like many others, Macdonald was impressed by the hundreds of thousands of handmade red poppies planted in the tower’s moat, each representing a soldier who died.



The most photographed shoe at Saturday’s shows wasn’t a Louboutin or a Jimmy Choo: It was Cinderella’s very own glass slipper.

Disney took over a space at fashion week’s headquarters with an exhibition of the costumes made for its latest movie, starring Cate Blanchett as the wicked stepmother and Helena Bonham Carter as the fairy godmother. For an hour or so fashionistas forgot about looking cool and indulged in a bit of old-fashioned fairytale magic.

Crowds oohed and ahhed over the crystal shoe, which designer Sandy Powell said was based on an “impossibly tiny” shoe with a 5-inch (12.5-centimeter) heel from the 1890s that she found in a British museum. Others lined up to sit on a chair to get their foot “measured” for the slipper, though they could only get a digital version of the shoe.

Disney showcased its costumes for Blanchett and the two stepsisters, though the blue ballgown worn by Cinderella – played by Lily James from “Downton Abbey” – was nowhere to be found.



A model chops off her hair, dabs herself with thick red paint. She stretches out her arms to simulate St. George’s Cross, and is swiftly engulfed by flames.

That short, unsettling film is just for starters at the show by Gareth Pugh, who was bringing his dark and thrillingly theatrical aesthetic back to London’s roster for the first time in years.

Pugh has gained a cult following with his sculptural designs — he is fond of distorting the body’s shape with bizarre inflated constructions. He treated his guests to a thought-provoking display of all-black military wear offset by red war paint.

The models, who all had red crosses painted on their faces, marched in shiny cavalry boots, hard armor-like shells and giant headgear with chains around their faces. Others were swathed in big padded and hooded capes and floor-sweeping skirts, like sinister medieval monks.

It was a refreshingly different show for London, which hasn’t seen anything like it for some time.



Across town, Emilia Wickstead’s catwalk was all prim and buttoned-up, its muted pastels, calf-length skirts and gowns with trains evoking a bygone era of elegance and romance.

The designer opened with demure outfits in cream, dusty pastel blue, and the palest shade of pink: Simple dresses with gently fluted sleeves, belted wool coats and pleated tweed skirts. Then came dresses in a bold geometric diamond pattern, though the lavender and mauve tones kept things soft and perfectly feminine.

Her final number, a red evening gown with a high gathered waist and full sweeping skirt, is made for the red carpet.

Wickstead, who began showing at London Fashion Week in 2012, has quickly proven a hit with the city’s well-coiffed, well-heeled fashion set. Her classic, quietly glamorous designs are favored by the likes of the former Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, and are gaining popularity in Hollywood too: Diane Kruger chose a silver gown from her spring collection for the Golden Globes.

Wickstead threw in a few pieces with a different feel — a powder blue halter-neck jumpsuit with a plunging neckline and a dress ensemble in stiff, shiny black PVC — but it’s clear she excels at a more understated ladylike look.


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