This deceptively simple collection of ombré layered, hand-tied and draped pieces was presented by Phoebe English for Spring 2018. The limited collection consisted of monochrome wrapped tulle and cotton clothes that were tucked and folded.

This far-from-basic black, gender-fluid collection from Neo Design was saved from boredom by the use of layering, cutouts, and tonal textural elements such as the rope-like embellishments that wound their way around the body.

Hands as a motif showed up in a number of collections leading us to believe this micro trend may become a macro one over the next few months. Nowhere was this theme more obvious than at the Triinu Pungits show where models were literally enveloped in arms and hands bestowing on them virtual hugs as they navigated the runway. Using a strictly monochromatic palette ensured continuity between the different looks which veered from printed bodysuits to open fronted, relaxed coats, to slouchy sweaters with ubiquitous frills on the sleeve. 

Edeline Lee stuck to a limited palette of neutral beiges, greys and a pink just a shade darker than the ubiquitous millennial. Frills, which have been so popular this season, graced the shoulders of sweaters and sleeves. The collection was unadorned for the most part, so these textural elements were an important way of adding interest. There were a few structural and tailored pieces including a double-breasted jacket and trench coat. Buttons, another feature that keep reoccurring in the Spring collections, also provided some colour contrast and embellishment on an otherwise unadorned collection that included simple shirt dresses, flutter sleeves and flared skirts as well as delicate smocking on blouses and dresses. Our favourite looks included long trousers tied at the ankle that were paired with a sweater with oversized bows on the shoulders.

Pretty volume in coats and dresses embellished with floaty feathers and pleated hems were the theme at Sharon Wauchob who went big for Spring. Cocoon-shaped dresses and coats in gabardine and metallic fabrics were the standout items as were prettily toile printed and pleated dresses. Asymmetry was also prevalent with off-centred coat openings and a scarf-like element that turned out to be an exaggerated collar. Feathers were used often, either exuberantly covering dresses or more subtly peeking from hems. 

A largely impractical but visually stunning collection from Gareth Pugh that was more sculpture than fashion. Presented as part of a movie screening, Pugh showed a series of blood red, ink black and brilliant gold pieces that were structurally severe and very powerful. 

This was an unexpectedly favourite collection from the London shows. We all know Spring weather can be variable and unpredictable, and this indecision was embodied perfectly here. Sweaters were paired with almost-there lace trousers and skirts, the latter of which were overlaid with black organza.  Lupfer also showed boldly patterned pieces: trousers and skirts were teamed with graphic sweaters, and big pants with cardigans. Structured shirt dresses in pinks, blues and oranges were covered with silhouetted monkeys and shared space with pretty embellished floral dresses. The result was a collection that perfectly matched whimsy and wearability.

Temperley made her name with dresses and continues here with what she knows. This unabashedly feminine collection felt more like a resort collection as models walked the runway with turbans covering their hair and oversized sunglasses evocative of holiday destinations. Flowing, patterned dresses were cinched at the waist with leather belts. Tiers, ruffles and some embroidery added texture and interest. The only evidence of any intention to evolve and move in a new direction were the trousers that were shown as evening wear.

The movie The Royal Tannenbaums entered the cultural lexicon years ago and the look and feel of that movie has inspired many imitators and not just in fashion. Holly Fulton's presentation of highly patterned botanical prints were mixed with graphic checks and animal prints with the zebra being the natural choice and its image showed up on sweaters, skirts, dresses and bags.