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In the patriotic setting of the British Embassy in Paris (you had to bring your passport), Vivienne Westwood showed a wonderful collection of Queens of Hearts, a proud celebration of Britain as a multicultural country, mixing races and cultures from all around the world – it was, according to a friend, “Ridley Road Market meets Versailles.” Viv sent out models in elegant Elizabeth II style gowns, lavish costume jewellery and tiaras, with coloured hearts painted across their faces in white, brown and black tones of blended identities – there was even a beautiful albino model, Diandra Forrest, in a tight leather bodice that harked back to medieval times. As well as The Windsors – and, of course, ‘Climate Revolution’ prints – these clothes alluded to the orient, and pirates of the high seas, and disco princesses and colourful Indian royalty. Actually, its oversized printed turbans brought to mind Mojo Jojo, the be-turbaned cartoon monkey that terrorised the Powerpuff Girls, while its standing-on-end hairdos were surely inspired by toy Trolls (and sometimes accessorised with an afro comb). Everything climaxed in a breathtaking display of opulence as one girl walked out in a floor-length gown of kaleidoscopic silver jacquard, blooming with bejewelled bow, butterfly and flower appliqués, and golden gloves and a cartoon crown; followed by another in a glowing evening dress of delicately laser-cut metal armour. As the punks used to scream, “God save the Queen!”
Text: Dean Kissick
Photography: Mitchell Sams
See all of our SS13 womenswear coverage here.