Monday 17th February

| BY Claudia Croft

Roksanda: Ready-to-wear AW20


“Wow! Did that just happen?” said Roksanda, after Cate Blanchett popped backstage to give her a big hug and congratulate her on her show. Joely Richardson, Vanessa Redgrave and Billy Porter were also there. It’s a testament to the designer’s standing in British fashion. Talent attracts talent. Roksanda always works with an art reference – this season there was not one but two.

A series of black and white hand-painted gowns were inspired by Lee Krasner the influential abstract expressionist painter. When her husband Jackson Pollock was killed in a car crash, she gave up using colour. The designer, known for her use of unusual colour combinations, was fascinated by this gesture and by the artist’s eventual re-embrace of colour. The other artist to influence the collection was Rana Begum who used colourful commercial fishing nets to create the soaring, sail-like installation in the marble inner atrium of the Foreign Office.

Begum’s gloriously colourful work inspired the knitwear. “It was all different pieces put together,” Roksanda explained of the multi textured, highly crafted cubist designs. They were the stand outs, as were a series of vivid gowns made from vivid technical taffeta which allowed the designer to fashion light-as-air volumes. It was grand but effortless. Could there be a more Roksanda combination?

Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans.