Following the anniversary celebrations of 2014, the Autumn/Winter 2015 collection was sparked by two heritage Lulu objects; the iconic Rose Basket bag and her childhood Polaroid camera. Lulu’s passion for art, and photography in particular, have always naturally informed her collections. For this season, Lulu got behind the camera herself to initiate the artwork for a collection that signals the start of an exciting new era for the Lulu Guinness brand.
With a characteristically fresh approach, and in the spirit of reinvention, Lulu took apart her celebrated collectible bag, scattering and then photographing the velvet roses across the office floor.
The deep hues of the resulting polaroids inspired the Autumn/Winter colour palette of rich, jewel-like tones with garnet and damson at its core, punctuated by highlights of burnt orange and classic Lulu lipstick red.
The characterful office floor itself, provides the artwork for our main print of the season. This textural print, which recalls spattered paint, has been realised in various guises on an assortment of fabrications; grainy leather, clear vinyl and satin with velvet petal appliqué.
The use of a mixture of luxurious fabrications, such as velvet, satin and polished calf, along with the gold hardware finish and metal detailing emphasises the sumptuous feel for Autumn/Winter. However, the collection is not just an evocation of luxuriant softness. There is, in classic Lulu style, another level; a darker edge, as epitomised in the sculptural thorn detailing. Lulu reminds us: “Life is a bed of roses but beware of the thorns”
Lips are also of course an omnipresent motif in the collection. This season Lulu’s lip blots cleverly combine to create the seasonal Lips Rose graphic, which is interpreted in flocking and devoré. Lips are also more literally translated in the Lips Polaroid print, which in keeping with the ‘in house’ inspiration, showcase Lulu’s employees’ lips (as well as her own) in their “Lulu uniform” of lipstick in the rich tones of the AW15 colour palette. Also note the hidden Lips distributed in the Floor Print.,
Lulu additionally introduces a new lip shape for the season, as part of her AW15 Tape Face. This abstracted artwork is specifically spontaneous and hand-done in feeling. Lulu may be a well-known exponent of innovation and modernity, but she is also true to her roots. When she first started out as a designer, Lulu literally made her handbags (such as the Rose Basket) by hand. For AW15 Lulu thus wanted to inject the collection with an unexpected and personal touch. This concept is most clearly illustrated through the utilisation of analogue photography as a primary reference. Also note Lulu’s embroidered handwriting and the stencilled font of Lulu’s lippy seasonal maxim that recalls the monogramming on her original Polaroid camera. The idea is further expanded upon with the employment and celebration of a variety of traditional production techniques, and with the manufacture of some key pieces in England.