Milk Made Travel Journal: London Fashion Week

I looked out the window as the plane touched down and was instantly greeted by a city enveloped in rain and gloom. To some, that might sound like an ominous way to start off an adventure, but for me, it was everything I wanted—I was in England covering London Fashion Week. As far as I was concerned, how could it be a true London experience without thick fog blanketing the city?

From the get go, I found myself charmed by the simple details of everyday British existence. Everything seemed to impress me! The Cockney accents, driving on the opposite side of the road, staring out the window in complete awe at all the tourist attractions we passed—even the red double decker buses.

The first thing I did was head straight to the House of Holland Fall/Winter 2012 show. I was immediately hypnotized by an array of zigzagging colors courtesy of Henery Holland’s vivid imagination, inundated by a semi-familiar culture that still felt oddly foreign. Suddenly I realized that this time, I was cliché, and in a good way. I was an American, and that somehow made me slightly exotic.

Later that evening, I was exhausted with jetlag, but I put it aside for a chance to experience a once in a lifetime concert. The Grammy award winning DJ Skrillex was having a sold out show in Brixton and Milk Made had been given an all access pass, giving me a chance to see all the behind the scene action. Needless to say, the excitement of watching Skrillex made me forget that I hadn’t slept in what felt like days.

Being surrounded by century old buildings and feeling the cobblestone underfoot reminded me of my love affair with Downtown Abbey. I recounted all the important fashion that had prospered there over the years, and after seeing some of The London Fashion Week shows, I’m happy to say my experience only supported that perception. Temperley London, Louise Gray, TopShop, and Acne (to name a few) clearly are keeping London’s fashion culture alive and well. But for me, the icing on the cake was the Burberry Prorsum show. It was an intensely covetable collection that finished its runway performance in a theatrical glitter rainstorm, giving the models a chance to unveil designer umbrellas and gloves. I’d never see anything like it—the production was amazing!

The days quickly blurred by, blending into a whirlwind of gorgeous shows, beautiful people and inspiring fashion, all captured on my iPhone 4S. Before I knew it, I was back on a plane heading for New York with a Fall/Winter wardrobe wish list that had doubled in size. After seeing all the alluring clothes London Fashion Week had to offer amidst the deeply rich cultural setting, I knew I had a better understanding of the fashion world. A fantastic experience all together.


–Hayley Barker

Photos by Amanda Hakan

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