LFW: Bol$hie: Romantic Poverty?
London Fashion Week kicked itself firmly into gear a couple of nights earlier than planned this year when garish young fashionista Rhiannon Jones launched her debut collection atop the National Car Park on Great Eastern Street. The whole thing was executed at breakneck speed, with people literally running through the doors to get to their seats, the show starting dead on 7.45pm and being over almost as quickly as it began. The collection, like its unveilling, was loud, brash and very firmly in your face. Not a hint of sensibility or compromise in sight. Seriously, have a look at the website.
Bol$hie is the recent obsession with the 90s taken to its limit. It is very much ghetto street wear of the 90s for the nasty cosmosexual of 2011. This is freak wear, worn by freaks. And I mean that in the nicest possible way because we are all freaks whether or not we are any good at hiding it. So enter MC Righteous, political rapper extraordinaire, followed by failed X-Factor contestant and alleged body entrepreneur Chloe Mafia, then there was a who’s who of Dangerous Minds ghetto boys, the albino model Shaun Ross and a tiny man wearing some tiny speedos (bol$ieo$?). As one audience member said when it was all over, “I guess props for using alternative models”.
I’m totally torn on Bol$hie, the attitude is too much to handle but at the same time the lack of giving a shit about trend is refreshing. Whilst it all looks very attention grabbing there seems to be a fundamental honesty in what Rhiannon Jones wants to achieve with Bol$hie, it’s by the freaks for the freaks and of the freaks, with no compromise. But overall I think the tone of ‘Romantic Poverty’ is something misguided, only idiots romanticise povery (cue Pete Doherty), people from the streets, the ghetto and freaks just get on with it. Self proclamation was a mistake because there is nothing romantic about poverty in the 21st century, it’s not the 90s any more.