Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo, the Australian-born, London-based duo behind Ralph & Russo, have a knack for making things look easy. Things like being the first British brand to be elected into the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture in almost 100 years, like building a client list in its thousands, and like being able to count Hollywood’s finest, from Angelina Jolie to Jennifer Lawrence, as fans. And now, they’ve done it again, presenting their debut ready-to-wear collection and opening London Fashion Week like seasoned pros.
Creating an enormous circular stage within Old Billingsgate, lampposts lined the central runway as if to give a nod to the street (a spotlessly white one, nevertheless) and where it was more likely the clothes to come would be found than their couture counterparts; more likely, maybe, but not that likely, for this was still a collection that boasted extraordinary levels of technique and innovation. From Arizona Muse’s opening look, a snow white silk dress with panels secured by Swarovski crystals, to a sheer, belted trench coat with detachable ostrich feather pockets, from laminated tweed skirt suits to metalised denim jackets and a final line-up of gowns galore, each exit finished with the brand’s highly-coveted heels and handbags, Ms Ralph and Mr Russo proved their idea of reality still comes with a pretty generous dose of fashion magic.
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