Friday 3rd March

| BY Jack Moss

Junya Watanabe: Ready-to-wear AW17

This is making us very happy. Not that Junya Watanabe doesn’t always make us happy, in this way that is always surprising for such an early hour on a Saturday morning, but today, even more so. As Sophia declared, post show: “sooooo good.” This season, the ladies of the house of Watanabe this season were punks. Not that Junya will ever say, exactly, but something about the combination of tartan and fishnets will always say punk, so too highlighter coloured hair, big fat leather boots and liberal use of eye make-up. And this was, for want of a better expression, traditional punk. Which yes, we know, traditional and punk in the same sentence makes for a bit of an oxymoron. What we mean is that very British kind of punk, of the era in which it all began – Sid Vicious, Dame Viv circa 1974. Fashion loves it as a reference – but here, Junya managed to create something extraordinary. It began with a leopard print biker jacket, which, at the sleeves fell away into long tartan drapes, spliced along the side. Tartan was a bit of a theme, different styles and colours coming and going across the collection – at points in these magnificent geometric layers, others simply as a pair of trousers, or a pleated school skirt. Fishnets here became tops, too, ones that went all the way over the hand, and into gloves. Union jacks seemed to melt away over t-shirts. Leopard print, in yellow and blue, became spiky, like armour. Junya pulled in other fabrics too – these almost tablecloth-esque offcuts that formed more magnificent structures – like the biker jacket, sent out late in the collection, with these incredible pincer-like sleeves, made from a clashing collage of fabrics. There’s sometimes not quite the vocabulary to describe a designer like Junya. Sometimes you just have to watch. In awe.

Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans