A few weeks ago I hopped on a train west to Debenhams’ press show in Glasgow for a wee sneak peek of their autumn/winter offerings and stylish catwalk showcase. The designs have now started to hit the shops so I thought it would be the perfect time to share my snaps of some of the standout pieces in one of the most exciting collections on the high street this season.
Debenhams was proud purveyor of designer collaborations well before they were common high street currency. You certainly won’t find any overpriced, watered-down designer offerings here – each collection is true to the fashion house’s aesthetic and has the feel of a proper, tightly edited capsule line. A real highlight for me was the autumn/winter Edition collection by Preen, Jonathan Saunders and Marios Schwab, as they translated the codes of each design house perfectly – Marios Schwab’s use of delicate embellishment and soft tailoring, Preen’s graphic prints and clean lines, Saunders’ feminine silhouettes and bold use of colour.
I also loved the H! By Henry Holland collection, which perfectly captures the punk undercurrent and tongue-in-cheek sense of fun House of Holland has become known for. The adorable bunny jumper and plaid skirt pictured above were two of my favourites. And, if you’re looking for something a little bit special, then No.1 Jenny Packham has some real show-stoppers – the delicately embellished floor-sweeping frocks had me wishing I had a ball to go to…
For me, the fashion show really highlighted Debenhams’ strength – its sheer versatility. There was something for all tastes, shapes and sizes, and the clever styling highlighted this beautifully. So many of the pieces were incredibly feminine, which certainly appealed to my girly tendencies. The pink Betty Jackson.Black coat above was one of the outerwear highlights for me; paired with classic tailored tweed trousers and a feminine blouse it was ladylike style personified. The Star by Julien Macdonald red coat with matching dress was another favourite look that had me craving a cover-up to match every frock…
The colour palette was a definite highlight, with plenty of bold hues to brighten dreich winter days. I’m obsessed with pink for autumn/ winter and it featured in several of the collections, including the gorgeous hot pink Butterfly by Matthew Williamson embellished blouse above and the highly covetable Jonathan Saunders/ Edition collection – but more on that soon.
Another pink coat or two – both by Red Herring and bargains to boot.
Tartan was all over the catwalks for this autumn/winter and bold, plaid kilts by Red Herring and H! By Henry Holland certainly caught my eye. Worn with leather biker and ankle boots it was anything but twee.
One of the standout looks for me was this one from Preen/Edition – the design duo have androgynous tailoring to a tee, while the monochrome colour palette and graphic lines kept things fresh and modern.
Jonathan Saunders/ Edition made bold use of colour with brightly hued coats and figure-flattering ladylike frocks in beautiful cobalt and black.
Markus Lupfer added a generous dose of sparkle to proceedings with his striking occassionwear, including this gorgeous fit and flare crystal detail dress.
Congratulations to Eve and team for such a great catwalk showcase. It ticked all the trend boxes (without being their slave) and I now have a wishlist as long as my arm.
It wasn’t all about the girls though – say hello to Hammond & Co. by Patrick Grant. The E. Tautz designer has created a range of formal and casualwear and beautifully cut suits especially for the department store. I was seriously impressed with the collection (please do a womenswear range, Patrick) and thought it really lived up to its claim to offer the essence of Savile Row tailoring at high street prices. Its charm and attention to detail make it one of the best menswear collections on the high street at the moment, in my opinion.
And last but not least, let’s not forget the secret best bit of department store shopping: the make-up. Debenhams’ autumn/winter offerings are a real treat. During the colder months, there’s something incredibly refreshing about neutral eye make-up paired with bold lip colour – Urban Decay’s subdued eyeshadows (the Naked palette is my all time favourite) and Bobbi Brown’s berry lipsticks certainly hit the spot. I was seriously impressed with the Nails Inc gel nail varnish too, which comes in a range of seasonal hues.