Firstly the setting for this show was totally cool. The old Dairy near Russell Square and the real difference was the amount of light in comparison with shows at the main tent at Somerset House.We were also quite close to the action with a 'never-ending front row' as Hilary Alexander described it on Twitter.
To me the Nathan Jenden collection didn't seem the most cohesive, although other comments I've seen would disagree. It was quite '80s with brash colours, sharp tailoring and 'wow' cocktail dresses. The animal prints and ethnic details ran through the collection yet some of the shapes reminded me of a different era entirely, something altogether more period with skirts with tiered backs and fitted jackets - a bit like Nicole Kidman's character Lady Sarah Ashley in Australia.
A couple of the dresses looked from a distance like they could have been made with sweet wrappers, bright with a shininess. Like Ashish, this collection too featured sunglasses on the models and the whole thing just felt very 'Jackie Collins novel' to me. African influences seemed to be forced together with something more oriental, in particular those gently coned hats with feather edging which were really pretty.
Some of the dresses use narrow ribbons of fabric to create a tutu, or feather skirt effect. The pale pink skirted dress and ruffled, exposed zip dress were probably my favourites and the ones I can see on a celebrity's shopping list. I also loved the fact there was a fair amount of navy blue in there... I'm planning on it being my 'new black' again come A/W.
The most memorable pieces were probably the floor-length dress with a tiger's face printed on it and the black and blue fur coat - I didn't think either of these appealed to my own sense of style but they definitely stood out.
Diane Von Furstenberg was there to support her former creative director as he focused on his own label. It also tickled me when Hilary Alexander wandered along the front row handing out jelly babies - apparently they were part of the hamper that was left in the boot of each of the cars.