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Richard Quinn pays homage to women of the Victorian era at London Fashion Week

Richard Quinn pays homage to women of the Victorian era at London Fashion Week



Royal-favourite designer Richard Quinn presented a feminine, romantic and floral-themed 2024 autumn/winter collection at London Fashion Week.

The curved catwalk, that went around the vast and grade-listed 1901 Ballroom at Andaz London, was signposted by huge bouquets of pink and white roses and puddle-length floral-themed curtains.

A live band, including a string quartet and a pianist, quickly put guests into a trance as the show began.

The London-based fashion and print designer incorporated vintage-inspired bridal wear that emphasised curves and accentuated long limbs – similar to high society elegance.

Quinn is said to be inspired by the late Queen Elizabeth II and other members of the royal family. She made a surprise appearance on the front row of his LFW show in 2018, alongside US Vogue editor Anna Wintour, and awarded him with the first The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design.

The designer also dedicated his 2023 spring/summer collection to her, because she touched him “among so many others with her grace and kindness”.

While each piece in the new collection has been “designed to endure” and “realised with the future in mind”.

The show notes said: “Unconcerned with hype, the clothes exist to be cherished, passed down from mother to daughter in days to come.

“From their internal structures to outer fabrications, these pieces focus on shape, volume, [and] craftmanship recognising the art of fashion design.”

For some pieces, models came out in white and black versions – both just as breathtaking as each other – including an off-the-shoulder A-line midi dress that had huge crafted roses over the bustier and long sleeves. The dress had pockets in its embellished, structured bottom half.

A flapper fringe jumpsuit with sheer panel detailing and a Tudor-inspired crimped collar was another example of this intentional repetition.

There was a classic white gown with a traditional wedding veil, and a black cross-hatch A-line midi-dress, with a deep plunge and bow waistline.

Whilst floral-themed chiffon garments stood out in the collection as well. From a high-neck black floral-themed flared jumpsuit with black dramatic feathers,  to an oversized maxi dress, also finished with feathers.

Backstage, Terry Barber, the global creative director of make-up artistry at MAC Cosmetics and the key artist for the show, said he was inspired by the eighties, Victorian times, “mannequin skin” and how some characters looked in The Hunger film.

Most models were wearing MAC retro red matte liquid lipstick in Feels So Grand.

“I wanted the lips to have a tight shape,” Barber explained. “We’ve not overlined or stolen [erased] the lips. We kept it quite straight, tight and structured. So they just look uber chic, like how Yves Saint Laurent models used to look back in the day.

“We haven’t done a lot of coverage on the skin. We have used a lot of powder and the MAC strobe dewy tint, with some concealer and foundation all around the face, including the eyelids and underneath, to make the eyes almost look faded away, almost quite Victorian paired with a really hard red mouth. We also used a MAC pearl tint and pearl highlighter on top.

“Though it’s just skin and a lip, it’s two elements that are very worked and perfected. The retro matte liquid lipstick is based a little bit on Russian red – that’s the red Madonna wore on the Blonde Ambition tour, it’s that blue red. It’s sharp. Feels So Grand is based on that.

“We did one coat then powdered the edge of the lips, and then put another coat on top. I didn’t want it lined up. I wanted it freehanded. Some of the models also have a net over the face, but that make-up will not budge.”

Some models also had their hair in vintage French rolls, which hairstylist Sam McKnight also admitted was inspired by Yves Saint Laurent models of the late 70s and early 80s.

“They are high shine, high gloss updos, styled with Sam Mcknight products, including the Love Me Do nourishing shine oil,” said McKnight, the lead hairstylist for the show.



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