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Having only launched her eponymous label in 2010, Alexis Barrell has quickly become the darling of the up-and-coming London fashion scene. The South African began her career by studying architecture at the University of Cape Town but soon left to study fashion design in Paris. She has since lived a nomadic lifestyle in New York, Athens, and now London, collecting inspiration and zest along the way. Her adoration for travel is evident in every piece of this collection.
Barrell’s spring/summer 14 line was “inspired by a trip in a white convertible mustang” along the Californian coast, Quentin Tarantino’s cult film True Romance and Kathryn Bigelow’s Point Break. The result is a combination of Hawaiian prints, boyfriend-fit hoodies, sporty playsuits, and varying uses of neoprene and leather, with carefree rebellious undertones. Models splashed through the paddling-pool runway in printed foam sandals their hair wet, looking fresh from the surf, enjoying every step. The front row got a little damp in the process, but it wasn’t cause for concern, too enlivened were they by the summer spirit.
Greys, whites, denim-blues, and blacks dominated the runway, accented with orange and yellow beaded jewellery. The result was laid-back Hawaiian chic. It’s a perfect collection for the fashion-conscious working woman, each piece appearing comfortable, versatile and perfect for the beach, summer in the city, or even the office. It’s a collection designed by a woman for women, and that’s clear in every garment. The styling, by Natalie Hartley of InStyle UK, brought each look together in a seemingly effortless manner. If you wear these pieces, all you’ll hear is Alabama whispering: “you’re so cool, you’re so cool, you’re so cool.”