Now that the official London Fashion Week schedule for spring/summer 2024 has been released, it’s time to dive into the matter: let’s look at London Fashion Week’s designers to watch.
Cover image: courtesy of Simona Rocha
London Fashion Week
Some would argue that London Fashion Week has lost its voice recently. With renowned fashion houses stepping away from Britain’s fashion capital, London has needed help keeping its relevancy compared to other primary fashion weeks. The same holds for New York Fashion Week, though, with Tom Ford debuting in Milan this season and Thom Browne, Ralph Lauren, and Tommy Hilfiger looking for luck overseas, too.
The few established houses loyal to London Fashion Week are Burberry, JW Anderson, 16Arlington, Molly Goddard, Richard Quinn, and KNWLS. Blame it on Brexit or London’s deteriorating fashion scene; with the British Fashion Council not sponsoring shows as it used to, London Fashion Week has become relevant on another level—one that is very exciting.
Designers to watch at LFW
For those in the know, London could be viewed as the beacon of hope for the fashion industry. Like Copenhagen Fashion Week, London offers space to fashion’s latest talent and new names to have on your radar. After a challenging season (the Queen’s death disrupted LFW), designer Harris Reed emphasized the importance of Britain’s fashion week to The New York Times: “Speaking with my fellow young designers, most of whom have put their entire brand budgets into shows to bring in sales and brand awareness, it is so important, now more than ever, to support the small brands in London.” Jonathan Anderson agreed: “It felt important to keep going because this is a time when London needs to stick together, and right now, some of this city’s young designers are at risk of losing their businesses.” Let’s take a closer look at London’s designers to watch.
Anciela is known for its conscious luxury womenswear, with sustainability at the core of everything they do. While many brands claim so, Anciela is rooted in London and keeps on designing, developing, and producing in their London-based atelier. Celebrating South American folklore and experimental tailoring, founder and designer Jennifer Droguett Espinosa has used Anciela as a homage to her South American heritage since its start in 2019. Droguett Espinosa is a familiar name in the scene, though. She graduated from AMFI (Amsterdam Fashion Institute) and has worked for Viktor & Rolf, House of Holland, Sadie Williams, Richard Malone, and Artschool. Taking inspiration from art, literature, and historical costumes. The brand offers re-worked tailoring and eccentric ready-to-wear interwoven with a hint of the magical.
Noon by Noor
Noon by Noor isn’t so new; founded in 2008 by cousins Shaikha Noor Al Khalifa and Shaikha Haya Al Khalifa, the fashion house has been serving a global customer base and audience from Bahrein. According to its founders, Noon by Noor fuses understated luxury with a sense of self-assured femininity. Relaxed silhouettes, expressive shapes, and a modern aesthetic combine to create a future-proof wardrobe.
Designed by two-time IDA International Fashion Designer of the Year Award Winner Jens Laugesen, Laugesen will show the relaunch of its UNISEX origins during London Fashion Week. The show will explore re/deconstructed wardrobe staples through the lens of technology balanced with artisanal craft. Recently, the designer transformed from artisan to phygital fashion, merging my 20+ years of experience within the fashion industry with the new digital tools and technologies of digital style, web3, generative AI, and immersive experiences. His relaunch will be anything but predictable, making Laugesen one of the most influential designers to watch at London Fashion Week.
Eirinn Hayhow is one of the most influential designers to watch at London Fashion Week for her solid focus on sustainability and her ability to reconnect people to Earth. It may sound wishy-washy to some, but it makes sense when diving into the fashion label. Eirinn Hayhow creates her own biomaterials and plant leathers from plant matter, incorporating healing plants and herbs to help with anxiety, and combining ancient plant wisdom with unique garments.
Ancuta Sarca is now being sold at Farfetch, Zalando, SSENSE, and many more, and that’s just a mere reflection of the label’s recent success. With famous fans such as Bella Hadid, Rihanna, Rosalía, and Kim Kardashian, to name a few, Sarca put her stamp on the footwear industry for good. For the collaboration with Browns, the designer collected over 100 pairs of unwanted Nike trainers and reconstructed them into heels. The Romanian designer’s designers are just as one-of-a-kind as her approach to fashion. Her fall/winter 2023 collection is inspired by the world’s obsession with Al technologies, its ability to create replicas, and the woods surrounding her hometown, Negresti-Oas. Opposites attract, after all.
She dressed Lady Gaga for Vogue and Taylor Swift for a performance, and then there were fans like Anne Marie, Bella Porch, Mariama Diallo, Bjork, Rita Ora, and Billie Eilish. May it be clear: Sarah Regensburger is one to watch. And when you do, you will see the designer’s name pop-up everywhere. As you might expect, that’s for a good reason: her designs are eclectic, daring, and quite affordable compared to colleagues and competitors.
Absurdism, realism, and all forms of weirdness blend with HARRI. With sculpture, craft, and craftsmanship as the starting point of each collection, HARRI defines a new way to look at fashion, making the label one of this moment’s most fun designers to watch.
Masculinity with a hint of feminine sensibility: Get to know Eudon Choi, the Korean-born designer who swapped menswear in Seooul for womenswear in London. Through the Trust Initiative, he has recently won support from the British Fashion Council and the Fashion Trust. Unsurprisingly, Choi is one of the most influential designers to watch at London Fashion Week.
What do Beyoncé, Emrata, and Christina Aguilera have in common? Besides their eternal fame, they all gave in to FEBEN. Chic, eclectic, and body-hugging, the label’s designs are modern yet provocative. A recent graduate of Central Saint Martins, her work reclaims feelings of displacement. With a nomadic background, FEBEN explores the visual codes of Black life from all corners of the world.
Now that many former fans have canceled Acne Studios (it’s got something to do with Kylie Jenner), SRVC might be the next big thing—and it’s a great alternative. The London-based label, led by Ricky Wesley Harriott and founded during the pandemic in 2021, offers a distinctive take on women’s design. With the diverse female form as the central focus, SRVC’s designs go beyond exploring innovation and functionality. One of the most exciting designers to watch at London Fashion Week.
Julia Fox, Blackpink’s Rosé, and many other famous fans’ hearts skip a beat when MARRKNULL presents a new collection. Founded by Tim Shi and Mark Wang, the brand’s collections explore Chinese county culture while blending the past, present, and future. His anti-fashion attitude has brought them far; they were recently nominated for the LVMH Prize.
Another LVMH Prize finalist, London-born Aaron Esh, graduated from Central Saint Martins, MA, and started his eponymous brand in 2022. Romanticism and elegance are two words that come to mind when viewing Esh’s minimalist aesthetic, which borrows signature items from womenswear to blend with menswear—and vice versa. His original yet refined designs make him one of the most influential designers to watch during London Fashion Week.