LCF News visited the International Fashion Showcase 2016 at Somerset House last week which was shown as part of London Fashion Week AW16. The event was themed Fashion Utopias, and each of the countries exhibiting showed their unique interpretation of it, featuring the work of their finest designers, and highlighting different aspects of their rich cultural heritage, with a contemporary twist.

Here we highlight some of our favourite exhibitions.

“If we could create a Utopia, how would we want it to be?” – Sarah Mower MBE

Egypt

Designs on display by: BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology Womenswear alumna Saya Swimwear, LCF alumni Sabry Marouf (MA Fashion Artefact and MA Fashion Entrepreneurship and Innovation), Marman, a recent Parson’s graduate, Reem Jano and Marsuma Designs. Paper lotus flowers handmade and signed by the children of the Tawasol school in Estable Antar, Cairo.

“We looked at the theme of Utopia and delved back into our culture and heritage, but also wanted to project forward, and experience a contemporary rebirth and resurrection. In Ancient Egypt the symbol for this is the lotus flower. When the sun goes down the lotus flower drops into the Nile, and in the morning it rises and opens up again. It has a constant renewal cycle.” –  Sabry Marouf.

Lebanon

Designers on display: Bashar Assaf, Rayya Morcos, Sevag Dilsizian, Joe Arida, Margherita Abi-Hanna, Mira Hayek, Nour Najem and Timi Hayek.

“Starch Foundation is based in Lebanon, its funded by Mitchel Resnick, a designer from our country. He selects six new talented Lebanese designers every year for and gives them exposure with media both local and international. We’re taking part as Starch Foundation. Two of us attended the LCF IFS 2016 Event and we thought it was amazing. It was the other side of our work – we’re more into design, and the event was more about marketing, so we found it very useful. Being in London is amazing, it’s an opportunity we couldn’t miss. To show our side of Lebanon, and the Lebanese talent and creativity in London is incredible. Not many people know about that side of the country – the news shows something very different.” – Starch Foundation

Philippines

Designers on display: Jared Servano, Maco Custodo, Micki Olaguer and Thian Rodriguez.

“My collection is about the use of banana hemp – in the Philippines we call it ‘abaca’. It’s one of the main sources of livelihood in the Southern part of the Philippines by the minorities and the B’laan Tribe there. It’s the most common and sustainable material we use in our daily life, and not just in clothing – in everything. I want to introduce more people to using it.” – Jared Servano

“The Philippines version of Utopia is dystopia. My collection is inspired by my dog Homer the Boston Terrier. Each pair of shoes represents a different part of him. The foil in the shoes is the dystopic element – it’s a Cheetos crisp packet used in a different way. Representing your country and showing your collection in London is an amazing experience – it’s a hub of culture and a mix of everything.” – Maco Custodo

We also managed to explore some of the other exhibitions as well, where we continued to witness the incredible amount of fashion talent and creativity across the globe.