MARY KATRANTZOY Autumn/Winter 2014-15

The big news this evening: not a digital print in sight. Nope. Not a single one. Mary Katrantzou , the designer who built her brand on a strict formula of sculptured, ultra-mini cocktail dresses emblazoned in energetic trompe l'oeil imagery explored new territory this evening with a standout collection.

Lean, ankle-grazing long-sleeved gowns were meticulously pieced together by crocheted symbols. Katrantzou was thinking about language, ideas of nationality and political allegiance, notions of uniform, and badges of honour from military medals to scout patches.

A series of chainmail dresses suspended from brace-style straps, spliced with silk pleats took their cue from butcher's aprons - but were so elevated into new realms of desirability one would never have known. The seriousness of her palette, navy, and Bordeaux, the verging-on pagan mood of it all, and the casting of older women, Kirsten Owen, and Emma Balfour - models who were a part of that Nineties movement - added up to a new chapter.

In addition to all those amazing pieces, there were some big commercial hits too. The racing green mink sweatshirt with embroidered twinkling heraldry on the front and the blue navy coat(above, in the middle). No, those won't be cheap, but her clients are the type who will happily fork out for one. In addition to those loyalists, Katrantzou is set to attract a whole new school of customer with this outing - and deservedly so.

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