Is Victoria Beckham’s New Collection a Sign of the Times?

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Like so many designers this London Fashion Week, Victoria Beckham hasn’t shown her latest collection to a live audience. Instead, she enlisted models to walk through the empty Victoria Miro Gallery in London, the colors of their clothes popping against the stark white background.

Unusually, Beckham took the opportunity to introduce the collection herself, giving us a look into her inspirations. “Limitations can be liberating. Working remotely, for this collection we reacted spontaneously,” the designer says. “We were instinctive. We asked ourselves what has changed? Who do we want to be? What will we desire?

“This collection is about freedom – to explore, to dress up, to be yourself. It is rooted in our true DNA, our language; strong tailoring, sharp color, modernity. And dressing women. Eclectic is a word I keep on returning to this season – it really encapsulates the woman, her attitude, her nonchalance.”

She notes hemlines are longer and “fits are easier” – initially making us wonder if Beckham has, against all odds, embraced this year’s trend for comfortable, pajama-adjacent fashion.

 

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Limitations can be liberating. #VBSS21. Today • 2.45pm BST • victoriabeckham.com

A post shared by Victoria Beckham (@victoriabeckham) on

However, when models start walking down the makeshift runway in the video, it becomes clear Beckham hasn’t suddenly dipped her toes into the world of matching sweatsuits.

She might say the collection was designed in response to the changing times, but the aesthetic is remarkably similar to her previous collections. The addition of long, floaty house dresses feels new and very 2020, but these come with suits, lace detailing, and leopard print coats – all things we expect from Beckham. Models’ skin is glowing and make-up fresh and light, courtesy of Victoria Beckham’s own beauty products.

 

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It’s a beautiful collection; there are vibrant pops of green, covetable chunky gold necklaces and a 70s Studio 54 dream of a white three-piece suit. However, this season we are expecting a bit more from designers – perhaps an innovative video to take advantage of the digital side of Fashion Week, or some kind of thoughtful response to the allegations the industry is producing clothes at too fast a pace.

Beckham might have been coming back to the word ‘eclectic’ during the design process, but it doesn’t really spring to mind when you see the clothes on the runway — it tends to fall more into the category of classic fashion. Our approach to fashion has changed over the past few months and many of us are demanding a more comfortable, wearable approach to style. While Beckham’s SS21 collection might be a feast for the eyes, it doesn’t really feel like it’s moved with the times.

Beckham says before the show: “This collection is rooted in reality – in life, and living. But it’s a dream inspired by reality.” But, to us, the fashion definitely feels more dream than reality.

 

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