The creative concept of DW17, titled Progress / Regress was driven by the two pillars which make up the cause: its commitment to charity and its attempt to convey a message and create a conversation. DONT WALK states that Progress / Regress focuses on “the tension that exists between progression and regression both on an individual and collective scale.” When it came to the fashion of the night, these two pillars translated into the style of the show and the people, with crowds embracing the theme of the night.
The show was opened by Away to Mars with clean, almost pyjama-like futuristic designs. Away to Mars was followed by Dreamland, the label of Dundee native Ruby Coyne featuring vivid and playful ensembles.
Morta Nakaite, a costume designer hailing from Vilinus, was undoubtedly one of the most eyebrow raising collections of the night. The designs featured all white textured clothing with oversized hats, including a pullover with a face covering hood. Another highlight of the night was the collection of Marcella Lobo, student of Amsterdam Fashion Institute. Titled “HYPHEN” the collection is about identity, aiming to lead the way in a shift from cultural to personal identity, which goes hand in hand with DONT WALK’s creative concept of progression and regression. Worn by Elikem Logan, the boldest piece was a flesh-coloured jacket with a moss green oversized fur hood.
Alongside avant-garde designs and work by young designers, DONT WALK featured established fashion brands, as well as more subdued works. The designs of Sol Dela Villa and Wythe Bea were refreshingly simple while L.K. Bennett brought the elegant demure clothes immediately recognised by the audience. An article about DONT WALK’s fashion would be incomplete without mentioning the grand finale, a dress created by Narcissus Flowers and Plants worn by Talia Tabbara. Being such an exceptional piece the dress was able to stand on its own on the runway without being complemented by an accompanying collection.
Following the intermission was the hotly anticipated lingerie, which was kicked off by the delicately beautiful designs of New Yorker Taryn Winters. The second half of the show was a combination of jaw dropping undergarments as well as more diverse collections. The male models made their debut wearing loose classic bottoms from Beaufort and Blake. Ciso of Portugal was one of the most exciting brands, as model Theodora Chia strutted down the catwalk in a black sheer bodysuit with a thin bow at the front.
A notable designer of this segment was Chinasa Chukwu of Weruzo – born in Austria to Nigerian parents, she brought a vibrant green co-ord. HK Beachwear was the final collection of this segment. As a whole, DONT WALK showcased an international and exciting combination of designs which resulted in a truly diverse and thrilling show. It becomes clear that DONT WALK operates at a highly professional level which exceeds what is expected from a student fashion show.
As for the guests, the St Andrews fashion shows provide an opportunity for attendees to be flexible with their attire, becoming somewhat of a halfway house between a night out and a formal ball. Many opted to pair sneakers with dresses or jumpsuits as opposed to heels, which produced a more relaxed aesthetic as well as being ideal for the muddy Cambo Estate location. There was nothing conservative about the choice of attire, as thigh grazing skirts, lace, exposed backs, and low necklines were popular. Combinations of statement pants and tops were a favoured alternative to dresses. Male guests wore the usual button up shirt and jacket ensemble, however this year the pairing of turtlenecks under jackets was also a recurring trend.