Excuse the cliché, but Roland Mouret gets what woman want. Know that people in fashion say that often and truth is, designers rarely do – but Mr Mouret has built his whole brand on it, on this intimate understanding of women and the way they want to dress – whether on the carpeted hallways of the National Theatre in London, where he held his AW17 show, celebrating 20 years in business, or on the beaches of Kefalonia in Greece. That’s where we find ourselves here (not least in part to the influence of la Neophitou, who calls it home) Roland choosing the island to present his Pre-Fall 2017 collection. But let us begin by saying this does not involve anything in the way of typical beach attire – no no – rather expect, as Mouret has always been so adept, a clever fusing of elegant drape with a slinkier silhouette that clings to the body, giving way to this simmering sexuality. Take, for example, the gowns that nip in at the waist, slice upwards on the leg and softly drape across the chest, revealing the barest hint of shoulder. Handkerchief hemlines are dotted throughout – on floating v-neck tops, worn with a trousers, or on skirts and dresses finished off with tasselled edging. Plenty of volume, too – a puff-sleeved kimono trench (the same shape echoed in a shorter blazer that ties at the waist) or a great roomy trouser that flares towards the hemline. And, for when the Mouret woman wants a little downtime – a varsity jacket, embroidered with a flower on the chest and worn with billowing wide-leg trousers. The closest, we suspect, that Mr Mouret will ever get to a sweat pant – and finished with a nose-bleed heel. Naturally.
Photographs by Maria Ziegelboeck