Vivienne Westwood Ventures Into Alice's Wonderland
By Isabella Redmond Styles
POSTED February 21, 2011
There were enough hair pieces and wigs at Vivienne Westwood’s Red Label Fall/Winter (FW)
2011 show at the Royal Courts of Justice to rival the usual judicial proceedings.
Dame Viv was
back in the building for her second  consecutive season and there could not have been a more
perfect setting for a collection she proclaimed to be ‘about Britishness.’ Inspiration came from
Portobello Market - "The market stall sellers and vintage collectors, the fruit and veg men with
their aprons, the army surplus stalls, the countryside gentry and the kids returning from nights
out." The market is a bite-size vignette of London life and it translated onto the Red Label
runway beautifully.

Naturally, it wouldn’t be a Westwood show without a punk edge, so the designer looked to
Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’ to provide a twisted mood. The models' hair
and make up gave the impression that, like the White Queen, they had been dragged through a
bush backwards. The clothes carried the typical Westwood draping - clashing prints and lots
going on at once, but utterly charming.  Westwood’s well tailored suit jackets and trousers were
ever present, regenerated in a pink and black check. One pair of pinstripe trousers were given a
glamorous overhaul, with subtle glittering pinstripes paired with a structured silk corset top in

a burnt out peach and blue. Surely, one
way to bring a little bit of Rock & Roll
edge to office life. It was a collection that
boasted something for everyone to covet.
Cosy knits (complete with Westwood’s
orb logo, of course) that would be ideal
for wintry afternoons spent walking the
dog were shown along Westwood’s
voluptuous party dresses that are worn
by celebrities the world over. For FW, the
dresses were  revamped in a golden hue
as well as an abstract leopard print in
burnished plum and bronze to make
them even more irresistible.

There were also pieces that were
outrageous and conspicuous enough to
turn the head of even the moodiest teen,
especially the exquisite feather coat in
rainbow shades.  Westwood guaranteed
that every woman, young, old or in
between would desire a piece or several
from her FW collection. She also stayed
true to her ethical beliefs, making sure
that her Red Label collection used
English fabrics, particularly wool, to
produce pieces that were truly British
from the ground up, but still had high
fashion appeal. Rule Britannia.
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