News & Runway


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There’s always been something really endearing about Luella.  In the way that when Marc Jacobs thinks up a new gimmicky theme each season, going  all out with it without really any consequence or care for continuity, in a similar fashion Luella does that too… except it usually centres around some British oddity or quirk.  The word ‘gimmick’ seems to be tainted with a negative connontation but I see nothing wrong with a hook point that gets things noticed and straight into the conscious memory (my memory of catwalk collections has its own self-designated hierarchy in the depths of my brain).  Last summer, it was the ditzy floral and the geek glasses.  Loathsome as they became towards the end of the summer, they somehow got everyone into them without that much explanation as to why.

For the next summer, the hook point is posh candy princess gone berserk on colour and I just couldn’t comprehend why I liked the collection so much, seeing as I was no Barbie fan (I was deprived I tell ya…) and the whole collection would in fact be perfect for some sort of Barbie costume special re-issue.  It might have something to do with the fact that my first contact with the collection was through Edmonds and Rodgers‘ beautiful backstage shots of the show (they shot all Dazed’s London backstage stuff…).  Again, it all comes down to that OTT excess, that all or nothing kind of overload that Luella has gone for…the nets, the trinkets in the hair, the bows, the clash of pinks, purples and oranges, the brooches the mix of naive and luxury fabrics… it’s just SO much.

Predictable statement there but I couldn’t resist it when the collection reminded me of the following, a list that is possibly unique to me…picking toys from the pink girly section of the Argos catalogue (the parents believed in educational toys like puzzles and didn’t bestow me with Polly Pockets or Barbies), orange and pink candy floss (only the good fairgrounds have the orange floss…), Chupa Chups, Tim Walker sets, Woolworth’s pick n’ mix, cheap market stalls in the 90’s that sold orange lace midriff baring tops, Spectacular nail polish, Barry M matte lipstick, pastel pens, alternating swigs of Irn Bru and Pimms, cheap sequin packs where the shapes of the sequins are all different, pipecleaners, Mean Girls gone posh, the defunct girl group Shampoo, Disney Princess collections, plastic that smells really really nice, fake strawberry flavoured things (Japan excels at this) and crappy haircombs that look pretty but don’t stay in the hair…