What’s the best launch pad in the UK for promising designers? But of course the nonconformist talent incubator Fashion East. With stunning alumni – Kim Jones, Simone Rocha, Jonathan Anderson, Grace Wales Bonner is Mowalola Ogunlesi, to name a few – the non-profit initiative has always forged future fashion superstars.
Founded by Lulu Kennedy in 2000, Fashion East began as a program for non-financially backed stylists who intended to showcase their creations. However, over the years, it has become the place to spot new names to get to know, and one of the highlights of the London Fashion Week, boasting a number of influential front rows and where you can start careers thanks to a single Instagram post.
With the collections ready to wear fall winter 2021 2022 ready to go, Fashion East shared with Vogue his new prestigious formation. Alongside the three designers who take part in the show again – Nensi Dojaka, Goom Heo is Maximilian – there are two new faces: HRH and Jawara Alleyne. “I’m thrilled with this diverse group of talent,” exclaims Kennedy. “Not only did they not give up during this difficult period, but they have a contagious energy and optimism”
© Photography by Trinity Ellis
Who will be part of Fashion East’s Fall / Winter 2021 program?
The London accessories designer Hannah, who prefers to use only her first name, from HRH (formerly known as Monster Coat Club), explores the intricacies of technical sportswear in her creations. Whether it’s figure skating or rhythmic gymnastics, her designs include an athletic feel along with a healthy dose of cheer in both fabrication and decor. “Each accessory comes from a desire to make delightful items for those I love,” comments Hannah, 30. “And who doesn’t need some of this now?
“My work is about sharing dreams,” exclaims 29-year-old Caribbean-born designer Jawara Alleyne. “In order to imagine a new future, it is important for people of color to be autonomous in telling their story and able to reflect themselves through their own goal.” Alleyne, who earned her prestigious masters in fashion from Central Saint Martins, explores the archetypes of menswear and redefines them with a more delicate touch.
Maximilian spring summer 2021
There is also great excitement for the veterans of the Fashion East. There will be some very bold sexy designs by 25-year-old Trinidadian-British stylist Maximilian Davis of Maximilian, the highly acclaimed rising star of 2020, whose dresses have already been worn by Rihanna and A $ AP Rocky. We could also admire the delicate light silk layers of the 27-year-old Albanian designer Sensi Dojaka, which are strong and sensual at the same time. Meanwhile, 29-year-old Korean designer Goom Heo offers a romantic and out of context point of view on men’s sportswear.
Also for this season the designers will present their collections in a virtual way, and this, as usual, involves a huge challenge due to the oversaturation of online content. And for the 2021 class of Fashion East? Expect sheer genius – Hannah, Alleyne, Davis, Dojaka and Heo will win you over with their highly anticipated collections. The future is here and, as usual, the fashion industry should be ready to take notes.