In with the (fashionably) new? / by Cinthia Contreras

In a few days, London Fashion Week will be back with its array of shows, presentations, parties and unavoidable shenanigans. After New York, people from all over the world will descend on the British capital to discover what we'll want to rock or avoid next season, which trends will persist and as ever, what's new in the never-samey world of Fashion. The Fresh. The Unseen. The New. But can we really expect to see radically new offerings and collections?

The world's numerous Fashion Weeks are always the focus of intense media attention. Industry insiders and enthusiasts attend shows and/ or pore over pictures of upcoming collections like archeologists digging for treasure. But the more one looks, the more one often starts to realise that even though X design might not be in stores and shelves for a few months yet, 'new' isn't exactly the first adjective that springs to mind to describe it. Indeed, it can sometimes seems as though we are dealing with the same elements bounced about time and again with each mind creating a variation on a common given theme. And that's when things are going well.

In the worst case scenarios, 'new' collections are either thinly veiled attempts at plagiarism (self or others) or cringe-worthy stabs at appropriation. Of course it's hard to keep coming up with endless ideas and in an area such as Fashion, 'inspiration' is often cyclical. However, the sad truth is that very few brands are really bringing something 'new' (and by that understand something extremely original, fresh and seldom seen before - not just a random feature designed to make people go 'oooh') to the racks.  

Creative boundary-exploring Fashion mavericks might be heavily outnumbered by their  safer more consensual counterparts but their presence shows that despite appearances, there are innovators operating behind the scenes. And in a city such as London, that's exactly what we hope to see during London Fashion Week.

The Chicutopian (@barbedchic)