Ashish Gupta, whose immersive sequin obsession consistently lands him as the favored go-to designer for party girls with a cool streak (Charli XCX sat front row), celebrated iridescence and bright nightlight hues in a surprisingly simple collection at London Fashion Week.
Usually more conceptual—recall last season’s playful genderfucking and, before that, beaded takes on gingham and denim—Ashish seemed to focus fully on texture and color this go-round, with teardrop-shaped beads as his prime device and the looks, when lined up, comprising a full rainbow. A total pride flag of a collection! He told i-D: “It was inspired by a box of Crayola actually! I wanted it to be super-organized color, but also it’s a statement about being multicultural and embracing all the colors of the rainbow. We do lots of diverse castings, but I thought it was quite funny to do one block-color per girl, head to toe, very literally, and just do a crazy mish-mash rainbow celebration. In the end, I thought it was so beautiful the way it was like a colour wheel.” (While Ashish’s runway this time around didn’t include all black models, he’s done that long before Zac Posen, and does always casts a diverse runway.)
Fur and feathers and teardrop silhouettes to match the beadwork complimented acid green jumpers and grape ensembles based on denim worksuits, all full of playful luxury and detail-oriented. There is also the question of those wigs—texturally weird for hair fashioned after afros, but as opposed to a Halloween costume shitshow they’re a glittery, fantastical imagining of something that’s maybe not supposed to be hair at all. The show was soundtracked by The Orb’s classic ambient banger “Little Fluffy Clouds,” as though he took the message literally.
The pajamas were the most—it was about nightlife in the most celebratory fashion—but you don’t get the full effect until you watch the final walk, an explosion of Crayola joy:
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