Helen Anthony | LFW AW24

Sexy, bold and bright are three words that easily describe Helen Anthony’s AW24 collection. Patent banana yellow micro bras and big pink double breasted coats are far from the uniform of the shy and retiring. Presenting the collection at the classically regal Kimpton Fitzroy hotel in London, made the whole experience feel extra deliciously rebellious.

While the highly coveted floral knitted three dimensional pieces were once again very well received, it was in fact the seemingly simpler pieces that were the star of the show. Creative director Naeem Anthony cites his grandmother Helen Thomas (hence the brand’s name) as key to developing his tailoring skills, these manifest into the expertly tailored pieces we saw at the show.

Audible hushed gasps erupted from the audience when an all white double breasted silk cape layered over a complementary floor length gown appeared on the runway. Complete with a wrap neckline, sultry high slit at the rear and gold buttons it was the way the fabric perfectly flowed as the model strutted down the runway that left the crowd gasping in awe.

In this era of normalised fast fashion, short attention spans and often lacklustre collections from large fashion houses, it was a beautiful moment to realise how expert tailoring and commitment to high quality materials can still break through the noise and produce devastatingly beautiful results.

Clearly expert but not boring tailoring is the Helen Anthony calling card and this show continued to prove why. Again, their knitwear is sublime both interesting and new yet familiar and comforting. But truly the monochromatic looks when there was nowhere to hide any tailoring slip ups, showed Anthony’s confidence in what they clearly do best. Beyond the classic training is Anthony’s ability to make truly genderless clothing, oversized boxy blazers with ties and cinched waisted patent dresses were styled on models of all genders. This
allowed the audience to just see the beautiful clothes as beautiful clothes.

Alongside the beauty were some fun visual storytelling moments, something that in the social media age can be gimmicky when not paired with substantial storytelling. We had the contrasting twins who appeared twice. Firstly, with one in a pink blazer and micro black patent hot pants while the other sported a wide leg navy suit. With the second appearance of this pair, one was sporting a royal blue oversized blazer with a simple black tie while the other wore a three piece pastel yellow suit with flared trousers. Almost like two sides of the same person.

We also had the same look on two models of different ages. A bejewelled semi sheer tie front blouse paired with chocolate satin wide leg trousers. The older with a full white beard and coiffed hair, the younger with black hair and long white painted nails. This allowed the audience to see that the pieces are for everybody and only the requirement is feeling confident. This was further reiterated later in the show when the blouse was styled with double breasted high waisted trousers on a female model and looked equally as exceptional.

In an era where the art of fashion is being discarded, we as consumers are often left feeling, uninspired, unsatisfied and underwhelmed. Helen Anthony’s AW24 show was a refreshing break to appreciate the blend of gender fluidity, boundary breaking and truly exceptional tailoring.

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Photography: Lucy Marie
Words: Jade Rozana