Silence. The music slowly creeps in. Models from the far east caress the backdrop of the runway in a sensual white light atmospheric fashion film. Their movements heavy, yet balletic; lending us a sense of what's to come. The light's go up, the show has begun.

Arcade Fire was the soundtrack to SS12 Lako Bukia SS12. The beat; pulsing through the catwalk hall gave the models; draped in delicate swathes of printed silks in geometric cuts a rhythm to stride to, as the onlookers leaned in to breath in the moment.

Lako, famous for her signature style which tames the female siren in opposing fabrics and complicated construction feats, added another level to her line-up in the form of hand drawn oversize prints. Her inspiration? A taste of Asia; specifically the trees and flowers which provided her with stunning imagery to give the woman next year a truly girlfriend 'date on a summers day' get up.

The first model glided down the runway in a floor length, almost extension of a sleeveless silk chiffon shaded navy blouse; consisting of a oversized button stand and split back floor length cape which mimicked the contour of the dress. Stand alone collars twinned with bodices and full skirts followed. Emphasis, it seemed this season was largely placed on the placement of the oversized fabric button stands that made an appearance on almost everything; from the cropped paper-bag waist skinny trousers in 'summer of love' red silk to the under layers of the chiffon entrusted drop waist tops.

The skirts hung on the bias like water. The silks; rushed to create an hourglass effect highlighted the waist and the double layer silk chiffon, almost culotte-esque shorts made for a perfect summer shopping spree. The colour palette; a variety of power reds juxtaposed to whites, shaded navy blues and stunning blacks made for a controlled collection. The addition of the prints left scope for a series of collaborations that in a statement manner lent a nod to the idea of a circus big top.

The collection was fun, flirty and well, like Lako originally intended; wearable! Staying strong to the famed comeback of the maxi, Bukia edited the design; lending a soft creased white silk satin. Twinned with the patent three leaf clover and triangle shaped chunky heels, tipped with a harsh metal; the looks led me to reminisce over spring summer evenings spent nursing a cocktail with friends. In fact, I can see a story behind every piece in the collection. Sitting front row centre, I was even close enough to inspect the nail art, Lako left no detail undefined. A black coat was decorated with a feminine organic mirrored curve in a shot of hot rod red; to no doubt link the looks.

The finale came with a change in beat, but only slightly. The music dimmed, the lights faded and Arcade Fire made a second comeback to finish with Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) as lovely Lako Bukia stepped out to take a sheepish albeit highly deserved bow.



Text: Madeleine Ayers

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