Back to Fashion Fri 26 Feb

Fairytale dream met rock concert at the ‘Ruins & Renaissance’ show at Freemason’s Hall in Covent Garden on Sunday with eco label Prophetik’s latest collection. The gradient-coloured garments were inspired by South America in the 1930s, in keeping with designer Jeff Garner’s Tennessee background.

Not a single piece of synthetic or petro-chemical-dyed fabric was in sight. Guests were regaled with a sequence of hemp silk and vintage French lace dresses in muted tones, with ramie waistcoats and black jackets and skirts made from reclaimed leather following in quick succession. The theme alternated between dainty and elegant to edgy and gothic to reflect beauty and despair, with the occasional androgynous look. The show was a tribute to Garner’s late daughter Veda who passed away earlier this year.

Live music acts featuring Eric Hatherly from Tennessee and DJ Coco added to the rock-concert feel as they opened the show with some Elvis Presley numbers. As the catwalk display changed from graceful to dramatic, the songs did too, alternating from Hatherley and Coco to Lucinda Belle on the harp who played slower songs like Hello by Adele.

The eccentric Garner, with his distinctive Prince-Charming-esque get-up of riding boots, balloon pants and ruched ties, certainly does not do things half-way; having grown up on a horse farm, he even had a white horse stood by the entrance to greet amused guests. He said that he never strays far from his roots.

In fact, that was apparent in many of the key pieces. Garner described the Southern- Belle-inspired outfits as ‘rebellious but with an infusion of decadence’. Showstoppers included an asymmetrical wedding dress with sheer sleeves paired with a parasol and a flowing, strapless linen maxi dress with brown embroidery across the bust. Very vintage.

The colour palette ranged from cool colours like indigo, teal, sea foam and Kelly green to warmer tones like marigold, iron, osage orange and logwood, all using earth-based dyes.

A low-cut navy outfit in organic cotton was a hybrid dress and riding cloak and it was unmissable. It exudes femininity with the daring, plunging neckline yet paired with dark lipstick of an Oxblood shade, it warns that the wearer is not to be messed with. The model looked like a complete femme fatale.

Clearly, the cloak-dress was Garner’s favourite too. He said: ‘It’s very regal yet you can get a little rebellious with the low neckline. But it’s also a cloak so she can jump on a horse with me. That’s my dream- find a lady that can jump on a horse with me. She’d just need a glass slipper and a dress. I’m a bit of a dreamer and maybe that’s why I design these dresses.’

Words : Yashi Banymadhub

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