Furry Trims and Nosy Neighbors: How London Fashion Week Turned 40

It was the Sunday of London Fashion Week and the last model had just stepped off the runway at the JW Anderson show. A heaving scrum soon descended on the designer, a sea of phones held aloft like antennas. Jonathan Anderson’s collection had been a nostalgic British jumble of chunky knits and trench coats, school uniform staples, retro thermal underwear sets and hats like Grandma’s gray pin-curl wigs, all chucked into a subversive tumble dryer for a warped take on what once felt familiar. Why?

“I was looking at ideas of ‘odd type’ characters in Britain, the nosy neighbor next door, but then slightly twisted into grotesque distortions and proportions,” Mr. Anderson said. He had been inspired by Generation Z’s constant remixing of the past, using the prism of technology or referencing bygone trends through street wear.

“I guess I was thinking about how Britain has changed,” he added, “and how we look at it in a completely new way.”

It was a fitting meditation for one of the country’s biggest fashion names, not least given the celebrations underway in honor of a momentous birthday: This season London Fashion Week turned 40.

JW Anderson, fall 2024Credit…Henry Nicholls/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
Erdem, fall 2024Credit…Erdem
Erdem, fall 2024Credit…Simbarashe Cha/The New York Times
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