LFW S/S 2008: Eley Kishmoto

Kate Gilbert reports live from London Fashion Week spring summer 2008

As I precariously balanced above the ground this afternoon on a one inch strip of metal scaffolding (in my killer stiletto shoe-boots I hasten to add), all to catch a glimpse of the Eley Kishimoto show, I realised that maybe my love of all that is fashion is starting to create health and safety issues. However, I can’t complain, because at least I got through the doors, whereas many stood in the cold for an hour, waiting patiently, clutching their invites, only to be turned away. Fashion’s a cruel world.

Design duo, Mark Eley and Wakako Kishimoto, took inspiration this season from the British summer fete. Reems of bunting hung above the catwalk and the well selected music (starting with the quintessentially British, ‘Great Escape’ theme) provided a quirky and upbeat backdrop to the festivities. Block contrasting colour panels featured heavily, with colourful candy stripes of all shapes and sizes. Cropped knitted cardigans contrasted over dresses and shirts. Following this, hooded anoraks with a pink, blue and black swirl pattern and drawstring edging accompanied simple dresses and skirts with an a-line shape. Integrated belts, small puff ball sleeves and button detailing added nice touches and brightly rimmed glasses and 1970’s crocheted skull caps, with flower appliqué, complimented the outfits.

However, Eley Kishimoto’s unique selling point is obviously their use of colour and contrasting prints, which this season have names such as ‘loopy lawn’, ‘cubic shower’ and ‘ivy zap zone’… which goes some way to explain the indescribable prints we are dealing with here. Orange, black, blue and white flower print dresses and a large zebra print coat, teamed with the usual in-keeping hosiery, provided a vivid and lively insight to the summer. Mixed textures of lace, embroidery and patchwork also added to the fun at the fair feel. Despite some disappointing familiar shapes creeping in, such as the smock dress, there was a great vibe coming off the show. Whilst not necessarily that innovative, nice touches such as rosettes and party hats made it an enjoyable show to watch and you have to give them credit for throwing one hell of a party.