London Fashion Week – Charlie Le Mindu Spring/Summer 2011

I feel that I need to put in an explanation/rant before I start talking about this collection and perhaps put London Fashion Week in context. I’ve seen lots of tweets along the last couple of days putting LFW and London fashion in general down. Sorry to come across all Carrie Bradshaw, but I love London and nobody talks sh*t about my boyfriend..! It’s not just people on Twitter, lots of the international editors miss the first couple of days of London. These people claim that London collections aren’t wearable and too extreme. Putting big names like Burberry and Mulberry aside, the majority of smaller designers that I saw produced beautiful and wearable collections…look at the likes of Ashley Isham, Eun Jeong, Jena Theo and Body AMR. Before making such a sweeping statement, take an actual look. 

Is fashion all about being wearable and serious though? Are we really supposed to look forward to season after season of bland, wearable clothes?! Yes, wearable collections are important, we can’t all go around dressed in a leotard made out of rubber gloves with kermit on our head like Gaga. But speaking of Gaga, isn’t she named as a fashion icon on a daily basis? I don’t see her wearing a DvF wrap dress or Ralph Lauren classics. She’s loved for the outrage and controversy of what she wears. And guess what, she loves British designers like Charlie le Mindu and Bryce Aime. I see London as a bubbling hub of fresh talent and it’s such a shame that people write it off so easily. I think the majority of designers who have made it big have been extreme and caused controversy in the past. Look at Marc Jacobs, championing the grunge look in the 90s got him sacked from Perry Ellis and McQueen earnt himself the nicknamed l’enfant terrible for his antics. 

Anywhoo off my soapbox and onto Charlie le Mindu. It’s worth noting that he started his career off as a hairdresser, soon becoming a celebrity hairdresser and wig-maker. He has done hair for the likes of Peaches and Jodie Harsh, so not your average hair! He gained such a following that he collaborated with Gemma Slack on a jewellery line and produced his first collection for Autumn/Winter 2009. His collections are not very wearable, but they’re fierce and they push boundaries. His Spring/Summer 2011 collection featured leopard prints, black, red, pink, flamingo influences and naked models. Controversy aside, I actually liked one of the gowns but I concede that I would probably never, ever wear it. What did you think? What do you think of London fashion? 

Reena Rai

Reena Rai is a 30-something London-based fashion, travel and lifestyle blogger. She has been blogging for 10 years (!), previously at before launching her self-titled blog.



  1. Amina
    September 23, 2010 / 11:28 pm

    i have to agree on everything uv said, wheres the sense of excitement in fashion these days im glad london is all about the extreme at the mo

  2. Reyna♥
    September 23, 2010 / 11:29 pm

    Great photos!(:

  3. Winnie
    September 23, 2010 / 11:55 pm

    Completely and utterly agree. Adore this post and my favourite shows are always the kookier and more imaginative ones. Maybe they're not entirely wearable but does that make them bad? Definitely not. It's exciting!

  4. Design Guy
    September 24, 2010 / 9:19 am

    For years there has been a great debate as to whether London can really be seen as a fashion capital, a Trend Capital yes, but fashion capital… The argument is out on that one. Until the government start supporting the BFC and using their clout in order to drum up international trade, London will never be seen as anything but a blip in the fashion calender. London is about creativity, it's been known for this for years, granted the main problem stems from the education system where the London College of Fashion or St Martins need to start breeding business savvy designers rather than avant garde designer. Giles Deacon, Jonathan Saunders and Antonio Beradi all said going to work for huge fashion house gave them the understanding of commerce in order to take their own houses forward. Love ya loads my friend in couture. xxx

  5. Maria G.
    October 21, 2010 / 10:12 pm

    I loved your article!! I found that Gaga wore the latest dress in pink by Charlie le Mindu when she was in London today, I recognized Charlie le Mindu so easily! great post!

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