This year two Turkish fashion designers featured their Spring Summer 2024 collections at London Fashion Week (LFW).
For Spring/Summer 2024, British brands Erdem and Barbour teamed up to create unique couture-like coats, which were showcased on the runway at London Fashion Week.
Erdem, the eponymous fashion brand founded by Erdem Moralıoğlu in 2005, is celebrated for its romantic and intricate designs. Known for blending historical references with contemporary aesthetics, Erdem stays true to its aesthetic with these two unique pieces which were inspired by the collection’s muse, Deborah, the late dowager Duchess of Devonshire.
Taking the traditional practicalities of a Barbour waxed jacket, Erdem transformed the silhouette into an exploded trapeze coat with open neckline. Both the olive and sand coats were seen styled with quilted liners, pieced with chintz curtain remnant material, that once hung at Chatsworth House.
Erdem commented: “I am so thrilled to have collaborated with Barbour for the first time, a British heritage brand that I have so long admired and worn for many years.
“My work has always been about creating pieces with a human hand and I felt there was real synergy in our approach to craftsmanship. It was wonderful to collaborate with a brand with such an extraordinary history.”
The designer was born in Canada to a Turkish father and an English mother – is famous for his use of florals, and there was no shortage of chintzy prints and bold blooms on waist-cinching midi dresses and prim pencil skirts.
For the last two seasons, British-Turkish designer Bora Aksu began his show in mourning; with requisite 60-second silences for lives lost. During his last Fall/Winter 2023 show, this time was dedicated to the victims of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria. The time before that, it was the Queen. Indeed, those in the know will even remember Aksu’s nod to the pandemic era when he famously sent glamorous nurses in stiffened white dresses and gauze caps down the runway.
In London at the weekend, however, Aksu’s Spring/Summer 2024 outing saw his signature whimsy, optimism and romanticism arrive without sorrow and instead got back to the core of his brand: a celebration of family ties.
Aksu’s inspiration for his collection was one of his core childhood memories: sitting at his mother’s feet as she knitted dresses inside their humble home in Izmir, a city by the Aegean coast of Turkey. The moment was celebrated on the runway as sweet Fez hats were popped on models’ heads; knitted creations made from upcycled cut-offs of his mother’s unfinished blankets.
“I am sure that my mum’s sense of fashion implanted something bigger in me,” Aksu told a reporter last year. “She was always very creative but her creativity was mostly hidden behind her identity as a doctor. Even though she was a very hard-working mother, she also had a strong vision of how her style should be and was never satisfied with the styles the stores at the time offered. So instead of getting frustrated, she decided to create outfits for herself. She learned how to knit and she created amazing skirts and dresses.
“Through observing the way she dressed, I almost wanted to capture that style.”