At their latest show, Dreamhouse, VS stretched the boundaries when it came to streetwear, displaying an eclectic range of styles and designs in an immaculate setting.
Having attended the VS23 Launch Party back in November, I arrived at Falside Mill excited to see what this continuation of the Dreamhouse aesthetic would yield. The dress code was ‘white’, suggesting that the ethereal vibe of the launch show would most likely be continued at the main event. Admittedly my first thought was that this soft theme was somewhat incongruous with the idea of streetwear as fashion borne out of functionality and convenience. Therefore, I was particularly intrigued to see how VS would adapt this theme to streetwear, potentially drawing on influences from Louis Vuitton’s Dreamscape show. In short, it was an interesting premise and I was definitely excited when I got to the show’s elegant setting of Falside Mill.
Upon seeing the stage, the heavenly atmosphere was certainly present in the cloud-lined runway and blue LED lights, whilst hip-hop music was blasting before the show had even begun. The show itself then opened with a bang as a troupe of dancers in graphic tees descended onto the stage. It was a sure-fire way to get the crowd hyped, having been a success at their launch, and it grabbed everyone’s attention to kick off what would be an engaging show. After all, you can’t have a hip-hop show without hip-hop dancers. They then used the dancers again to open the second half, once again successfully grabbing everyone’s attention after the brief interlude.
When the fashion part of the show got into the swing of things, it quickly settled into a festive atmosphere with the models parading a range of engaging designs that, as usual, surprised me with their creativity within the streetwear mode. One thing that always impresses me about VS is the amount they experiment and highlight menswear, which I have noticed tends to take a backseat in other fashion shows. Often, when the models walk in pairs, it can seem like the women are given the show-stopping outfit and the men are just there to walk alongside them. This was not the case at all and the pairings complimented each other nicely. Lots of accessories, I noticed, were used within the menswear looks.
One particular detail they notably played with was that of crochet patterns, a trend that has certainly taken over the internet recently. This included an eclectic crochet cardigan and sweater vest and a gilet jacket with a cross-hatched pattern, evoking the style often woven into crochet. This helped emphasize how on-trend VS is, and also their desire to explore accessible fashion. One of the reasons crochet has become so popular is because it is a learnable skill and also a sustainable one, since lots of crochet fashion stores are small businesses started by people who are self-taught. As such, I thought this specific design trend cleverly fit VS’s niche.
The white theme was definitely present but not overly dominating in that there was not an absence of colour or variety from the outfits. In fact, tthe audience being primarily in white provided an excellent contrast to the designs, no doubt a clever and most likely intentional creative decision from the show directors. One notable example of colour was an outfit featuring a bright red cowboy hat – yet another very on-trend detail.
The models themselves were smooth and professional, yet didn’t seem overly rehearsed. This meant they walked with an ease and confidence that evoked casual street style. The energy was effortlessly stylish, as if they were strolling down the street rather than a runway surrounded by screaming students.
One really nice touch to the show was the live band playing throughout. The music was consistently upbeat and the musicians added to the back drop and luxurious feel of the event. Particularly when you are paying upwards of £50 for a ticket, these little details really elevate the show.
Speaking of the price tag, it is worth noting that many extra details were thrown in to help justify the ticket cost. Complimentary Jannetta’s was a nice touch (and very distinctly St. Andrews!), as were other little things like the free coat check. There is nothing more annoying than showing up to a steeply priced event and immediately finding lots of little other charges adding up. Therefore, whilst it is fair to say that it was by no means a cheap event, in terms of entertainment value, they had clearly taken that into account and gone to all lengths to provide hours of entertainment.
In summary, it was a very successful show, followed by a classic VS hip-hop after party, and I was thrilled to have been able to attend. I can’t wait to see what VS has to bring us next year!