Vivienne Westwood’s Fall 2023 Lookbook: Descent Upon the Department Store

The FW23 Vivienne Westwood Lookbook focuses on the mish mash of individuals that make up the underground London spirit

Last week marked the first Vivienne Westwood runway presentation since Westwood’s tragic passing in late December of 2022. With Andreas Kronthaler now at the helm of the brand, the collection was built around Londoners themselves, told through an amalgamation of mixed-matched fabrics and pleasure-driven dressing. Following the collection, the label has released their AW23 Lookbook, shot and styled by Sabina Schreder, which has been captured all around London from department stores to art galleries.

“We shot the collection in Peter Jones – it was our favorite shop. It’s a store for everyone. You can find everything you need. It’s an English institution. We also shot at Sadie Coles’ gallery in Mayfair, she’s a friend and we were allowed to shoot with the art, Jonathan Lyndon Chase – great paintings & great sculptures. Then all around town – Carnaby Street, Soho. It’s a mix of London, Londoners.”

The lookbook shows off the underground punk spirit of London that Westwood is synonymous with, which is sort of flipped on its head in an ironic sense, taking place in the pedestrian wonderland of the department store. Models in tartan frocks, knee high skin tight leather boots, waistcoats, neckties, and oversized beanies are sported by models laying across display beds or sandwiched in between carpet samples in a showroom. Some suits are more classic, while others trade button up shirts for a plaid and metal harness, constricting the upper body. Gender is left at the department store entryway, with a host of men donning ultra mini short skirts, skin tight metallic leggings and a range of dresses.

The collection is an exuberant mish mash of prints, silhouettes, and materials that all come together to speak to the underground spirit of London, as the label also continues its sustainability efforts with 88% of the collection using lower impact and cruelty free materials. In the wake of Westwood’s passing, it is encouraging to see that her ubiquitous spirit can be felt in the DIY-adjacent garments, the sense of humor in the lookbook, and her commitment to saving the environment.

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