14 September 2023

LFW: The shows to watch out for

Burberry re-takes centre stage, Conner Ives goes digital, Harri bounces back to the runway and all eyes on newcomer Aaron Esh…

London Fashion week is back!

Once again Harris Reed kicked off the spectacle, this time at Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall on Wednesday night. In contrast to his previous shows – often adorned with bright colours, theatrics (there was no Florence Pugh taking the stage this time) and elaborate headpieces – Reed instead turned to a more subdued and demure affair. Still embodying the shapes that he has become known for, the designer focussed more on cinched waists and extravagant forms, giving us glamour and elegance, setting the tone for this season’s London Fashion Week. It felt, in between all of the staple silhouettes, calm.

And the week has hardly even begun. London is known for its dedication and continuation to inspire the next generation of young, blossoming designers – thanks in part to the British Fashion Council’s NEWGEN initiative, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. SS24 is set to welcome more emerging designers for debut shows, whilst simultaneously continuing to highlight the top British brands who are often tasked with carrying the torch of London Fashion Week. From the schedule of the five-day event, it looks as though this season’s fashion week is set to feature more POC designers, but only time will tell if we will see more diversity on the runway itself as well. 

With fashion week moments away, we take a look at the upcoming shows and who to look out for…


Following his recent appointment as creative director of Burberry last year, after the departure of Riccardo Tisci’s five-year long tenure. Following the success of his FW23 show earlier this year, Lee is breathing new life into the long-standing heritage of the British brand, and is clearly determined to bring Burberry into fresh grounds, after critics stated how Burberry had fallen out of favour and there was a general disconnect with its heritage. Leaving behind the more gothic and amplification of the iconic Burberry print emphasised by Tisci, FW23 has already marked Lee’s shift in vision, paying testament to Saville Row’s tailoring craftsmanship and statement psychedelic colours. Burberry has also taken over North London cafe, Norman’s, known for its celebration of British classics such as the full-English breakfast and Tottenham cake. Off the back of the hype of Lee’s FW23 show in February this year, the highly anticipated show will conclude if this is really the beginning of something great for Burberry.


Kazna Asker is fresh out of fashion school, completing her MA at Central Saint Martins last year, and is already carving out a reputable path in the British fashion landscape with her unapologetic and poignant work combining Yemeni heritage with a nod to her Northern British upbringing. The combination of Islamic garments such as the Hijab and Abaya, and British sportswear is tribute to her key focus of community and efforts to defeat stereotypes towards the Muslim population in the UK. Alongside her thought-provoking designs, Asker has contributed to community projects and fundraisers both in her hometown of Sheffield, and for her home country Yemen, raising over £20,000 for charity in the past five years

The designer, who is part of the BFC NEWGEN, has also won the Debut Talent Prize for Fashion Trust Arabia for her MA collection, commended for the fusions between communities. Her MA show was also the first of its kind for Central Saint Martins, being the first to showcase a collection of Hijabi wearing models. Straight out the gates of fashion school, Asker is making waves and has become known for her portrayal of political activism within her designs. Her refreshing style is not to be missed on this season’s runway. 


Hot onto the scene is London-born Aaron Esh, with his contemporary, androgynous tailoring of menswear, inspired by the elegance and haute couture of womenswear. The recent CSM graduate, who has also won the BFC NEWGEN award, has gone on to receive multiple nominations for prestigious awards earlier this year, including the LVMH Prize and LUAR.

In his debut show, Esh will present a fluid collection, showing us one wardrobe combining both menswear and womenswear, presenting delicate silhouettes and details that have long been attributed to womenswear, juxtaposed with the staples and finishes traditional of menswear. A pioneering take on British fashion, Esh is a trailblazer and one not to miss this season.


Throwing it off kilter, British rapper Skepta has stepped away from music instead turning his hand towards fashion, with the launch of his brand MAINS London. Teasing this shift since 2018, the brand is now set to finally premiere at London Fashion Week this season. Skepta has continued to tease the brand with various sightings of him sporting MAINS at Wimbledon and Silverstone this summer. Ahead of the debut, an official drop has been revealed with Dover Street Market, offering a peek at the highly anticipated streetwear brand, with fellow rapper Central Cee adorning some of the garms on offer. Amongst the hype, it will be interesting to see if Skepta is able to keep toeing the ever-growing line that draws fashion and music together.


A recent graduate of Central Saint Martins, having received a BA in knitwear in 2020, Chet Lo has moved quickly since interning at Maison Margiela under John Galliano and joined the roster of emerging talent at Fashion East, receiving critical acclaim for his spiky, colourful first offering. The designer made his London Fashion Week debut for SS23 last year. Inspired by the versatility of knitwear and the fusion of his Asian heritage and Western aesthetics, Lo has become a critically acclaimed designer and has worked with the likes of Willow Smith, Dua Lipa, Micaela Coel and Zendaya. 

Pairing a love for futurism with classic feminine silhouettes has positioned Lo as an innovative face amongst London’s fashion landscape. As he keeps us on our toes with these otherworldly designs, it will be interesting to see what he has to bring to the runway for this season of London Fashion Week, especially as his last fashion week show debuted a departure from his signature spikes, favouring more sleek designs harking back to his Chinese heritage.


Hailing from Kerala, the London-based menswear designer HARRI is preparing for his runway debut, under the BFC NEWGEN umbrella. Having completed his MA in Menswear at London College of Fashion in 2020, the designer has gained virality for his inflatable ballooning latex clothing (further acclaim came after dressing Sam Smith in a custom piece for their 2023 BRIT award appearance).  

HARRI’s statement pieces play with creative and daring silhouettes, combining the classical with surrealism – often even humorous in their design. HARRI will bring an intimate few to London’s Old Selfridges Hotel for their debut runway this week, with his inflatable clothing not being the only thing to inflate as he instates himself firmly on the scene. 

  • Writer Lucas Ind
  • Banner Image Credit Suleika Mueller

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