Vivienne Westwood has touted the idea of sustainability in fashion long before it was mainstream. When her brand first launched in the 1970s, her punkish DIY approach meant reusing materials and producing less. Since then, Westwood has become an environmentalist in her own right, and the brand’s de facto manifesto has been “Buy less, choose well, make it last.”
The last time the label presented at London Fashion Week, the collection was reportedly 90% made of materials that have a reduced impact on our environment. For fall 2022, the total amount of lower-impact and cruelty-free materials amounted to 71%, with the brand forecasting the number to rise to 95% once it takes into consideration what’s actually delivered to stores. Organic cotton, recycled cotton, cotton from regenerative agriculture, recycled polyester, recycled nylon, and responsibly-sourced viscose are just a few of the fabric combinations used, with six different fabrics from the collection upcyled from previous seasons.
Related article: The Hottest Street Style From London Fashion Week Fall 2022
The designer has also been thinking about fine art. Just last year, Westwood re-released pieces printed with François Boucher‘s 18th-century painting Daphnis and Chloe, which she’d first used on corsets at the fall 1990 show. But for fall 2022, she branched out into different genres. The wandering eyes from Matisse‘s work, for example, were hand-painted onto white denim jackets, jeans, and sneakers to symbolize being protectively watched over. We also saw the dark scenery of Pieter Bruegel‘s 1550 painting The Fight Between Carnival and Lent across different jackets and coats. (According to the show notes, Westwood was attracted to the painting for its surreal nature: “According to the theory, people were eating moldy corn which is the same fungus used in LSD. They became obsessed with hell and witches.”) And Henri Rousseau’s rainforest tiger was seen throughout the collection, prowling on tote bags and clutches. It hinted at another inspiration for the show: the Year of the Tiger.
All the usual Westwood motifs were there, too. The digital look book featured street-cast models wearing dresses with large, unbalanced shoulders, along with tartan pants and suit jackets and shrunken blazers with ties. Of course, you could find precision-tailored corsets and pearl necklaces, too, albeit with new twists: the pearls came chunkier, the corsets more slimmed down. Both are sure to continue to be fan favorites for a long time.
Related article: Molly Goddard Knows She’s Been Knocked Off. Here’s Her Solution