The KNWLS SS23 show took place at The Mills Fabrica in King’s Cross, an old textile factory that played host to Fashion East (an incubator for young London design talent) earlier in the day. KNWLS — the South London label by Charlotte Knowles and Alexander Arsenault — is an alumnus of Fashion East, and today is the brand’s fourth time going solo on the catwalk at London Fashion Week.
Sat on the front row was Bimini, Ella Richards, Ellie Roswell of Wolf Alice, Julia Hobbs, Susie Lau, and photographer Harley Weir (a graduate of Central Saint Martin’s responsible for shooting the KNWLS brand campaigns). Some of the stars were dressed head to toe in the label, with U.K. Drag Race favourite Bimini opting to finish off their look with a purple knitted mohair hat and matching leg warmers.
The concrete venue was bathed in red light before spotlights rose to pulsating music. Models, including Herne Hill’s Alva Claire, paced the runway in earthy tones of brown, rust and cream. Distressed heavy leather and shearling jackets matched the shoes, provided by UGG, which were pierced with metal rings that jingled with each step. Suede corsets contrasted with sheer bodysuits and flared leggings. Floaty bias cut dresses were studded with bling in the form of tiny crystals — a look most suitable for holidaying in Ibiza.
The clothes were printed with KNWLS signatures: including florals, tie dye and tartan. The Razr bag — which has been carried by current ES Magazine cover star Julia Fox — was back, this time in black and pink. Fox, who starred in Uncut Gems and dated Kanye West before becoming a name in her own right was rumoured to be walking in the show, but unfortunately did not make an appearance.
KNWLS proves that the Y2K look — popularised by Gen Z on TikTok — isn’t going anywhere soon. Acid wash denim trench coats, micro miniskirts and jackets recalled the era, alongside ultra-low-rise jeans and trousers with visible thongs peeking out of the waistband.
Will you dare to wear?