Christopher Bailey’s recent collections for Burberry have revolved around a mythical ambulatory girl, one as comfortable on a muddied Glastonbury field as a Far East pilgrimage. As long as slick trenches are required, she’s there, uniformed in the brand’s latest and greatest outerwear. For Spring 2012, she’s letting a degree of arid warmth into her vernacular, reflected in a new desert-inspired palette and in the nativistic design motifs seen throughout the collection. Though the raincoats – prevalent in and essential to any Burberry collection – transcend seasons, the raffia hats and accessories made it clear this was a British version of warm weather attire.
There were some twists: a truly memorably deep turquoise leather full-skirted trench was the instant seasonal standout, while the abstract geometric prints and wood beading found on some of Spring’s day dresses lent an air of the exotic to the collection. But it’s to Bailey’s credit that his imprint on the Burberry brand is strong enough to be instantly recognizable (and covetable); by now we know that his runway army will look like cleaned up versions of the rock icons he loves. Bailey veered towards modernized versions of his favorites: classic rock cool given a new youthful twist. The show’s soundtrack – including U2’s “Everlasting Love” and Jeff Beck and Joss Stone’s take on “I Put A Spell On You” – kept the feeling of the show familiar but welcome. In a mythical, climate-defying realm where the earthy ritualism of Coachella meets the moody, rain-soaked insitutions of Glastonbury, Burberry’s latest music-ready wardrobe would be required wearing.
Watch Burberry’s Spring 2012 Show: