Belfast Telegraph

Designer JW Anderson collection inspired by Henry VIII

By Nevin Farrell

Northern Irish fashion designer JW Anderson has been wowing audiences at one of the world's top catwalk shows - London Fashion Week - and his creations are literally fit for a king.

Son of Irish rugby legend Willie Anderson, the 32-year-old from The Loup near Magherafelt, once again captivated the crowds in the capital at the weekend.

Fashion fans and style gurus crammed in to see his latest outfits, some of which are based on the Tudor-style of King Henry VIII.

Anderson was rubbing shoulders with fashion giants like Versace as his Spring/ Summer 2017 offerings were displayed on the runway.

Front row seats were nabbed by model Alexa Chung and British Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman - ample proof his innovative work is at the forefront of modern trends.

He established the JW Anderson label in 2008 and has been the darling of the fashion world since.

Ireland is often the source of the young designer's inspiration.

In the past, the lace pattern on one of his tops was a replica of an 18th century lace tapestry found in a bog in the west of Ireland and now on display in the Ulster Museum.

But this year it is Henry VIII who sparked the inspiration for his womenswear collection. One top, divided into four sections with slashed ribboned arms and unfastened belt detail, recalled the classic brocaded Tudor waistcoat in the wife-collecting axe-loving monarch's most famous portrait.

Cross pollination between menswear and womenswear is something Anderson is well versed in, and his Spring/Summer 2017 offering was no exception.

All sorts of things were going on - Tudor-esque ballooning sleeves, hessian sack dresses and colourful dip dye.

The idea of gender and clothes, specifically the norms of how a woman or man should dress, is central to Anderson's work. In his womenswear and menswear he undercuts conventions by suggesting an alternate dress code.

"I like the idea of a woman wearing something that is so masculine. The shape is very empowering," Anderson said.

JW Anderson has evolved into an internationally renowned and award-winning brand.

Key stockists of the Anderson label include Barneys, Opening Ceremony, Dover Street Market, and Jeffrey in the US.

European stockists include Selfridges, Le Bon Marche and Printemps.

Joyce, Isetan & 10 Corso Como are key advocates in Asia, while Net-a-Porter is among online shopping destinations for his clothes.

Belfast Telegraph


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