Grown Up Glam Rock. Hillier Bartley AW19

What can you expect from Hillier Bartley for autumn-winter 2019? Stunning tailoring that’s Savile Row quality, but with a twist (think double-breasted houndstooth suit punked up with a zipper across the waist and matching pants in origami pleat). A smart clash of fashion references, from Kansai Yamamoto (look at the prints inspired with his work) to the bold New Romantics’ movement from 70s London. And brilliant eveningwear that spans from a gorgeous line-up of tailoring to a V-neck maxi-lenght gown in red (worn over a purple turtleneck – love this colour palette). Luella Bartley and Katie Hillier keep the vision of their brand consistent, yet at the same exciting. While Luella works closely with the clothes, Katie does the accessories. Look at the trapeze-shaped “cassette” bags – they look elegant, but sharp, grown-up, but glam. Just like the collection itself.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

That Woman. Hillier Bartley Resort 2019

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What’s Hillier Bartley like for resort 2019? Well, it’s definitely not about one aesthetic or any central idea. Luella Bartley and Katie Hillier chose to play with their signatures (chic loungewear, for instance) this season, adding some very unexpected twists to the collection. Distorted, Saville-Row-esque tailoring styled with thick turtlenecks or coming in emerald silk; equally deconstructed shirts with, what it seems, clashed double sleeves; tie-dyed, high-rise pants. The enormously big taffeta bows on pencil skirts and strapless tops had something of fancy nightclubbing, straight out of the 80s, just like the latex pussy-bow piece. Oh, and of course that suit. “We call it the Brexit—or the anti-Brexit—suit,” said Bartley. “I don’t know where it came from, but it felt right”. Accessories, that are largely Hillier’s job, span from the classic bunny clutch (in new colours) to boxy Cassette, a bag injected with lovely, vintage feeling.

Conclusion: what’s most fascinating about Hillier Bartley – the brand exists for few seasons now – is that the designers created a distinct look that can’t be mistaken with any other brand. You look and you know it’s the Hillier Bartley woman – mature, kind of mysterious, but not taking herself too seriously. She can go for both, a cocktail in the new posh spot, or sip beer in an old school pub.

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Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Experimental Dandy. Hillier Bartley SS18

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Sometimes, even the most costly production of a fashion show can’t be compared to one single look coming straight out of a silent look-book. In this case, I mean Hillier Bartley‘s beige tuxedo look. The jacket with shoulder-pads was slightly misshaped, giving it a cool, nonchalant manner; the pants were cropped and given a semi-Banana silhouette to keep it equally dandy. Styled with white socks and matching-colour pointy-toe shoes, that might be one of the best (and most striking in its actual simplicity) looks I’ve seen this season.

Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley have introduced their woman as a refined, but off-beat persona, few seasons ago – the story goes on, but this time in incredibly tempting shades of lilac, saucy red and dripping liquid gold. Zebra-patterned velvet frocks and handbags with lots of fringes were another clue of Bartley and Hillier’s love for a decadent kind of chic. The designers, known for rather loosely-fitted garments, seemed to be experimental about the forms of garments in their new collection – that’s why, they topped blazers and pants with fishnet to see how the silhouettes change and evolve. The effect? Bold.

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Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Hillier Bartley Feather Charm

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‘For for spring-summer 2017, Katie Hillier‘s and Luella Bartley‘s brand, Hillier Bartley, is inspired by the bohemian spirit of West London in the 70s. Made in Italy from gold-plated brass, this whimsical charm is adorned with a single Swarovski faux pearl and playful pink plumes that fall to your collarbone.’

Get it here.

#2016 – Hillier Bartley

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Hillier Bartley, formed by Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley, is a label offering womenswear created by real women. The brand is already widely recognized for its Anglomania attire: at a first glance, the idea’s based on the wardrobe of an English aristocrat, who belongs to a classy gentlemen’s club. But then, the elegance goes Absolutely Fabulous non-chalance. The designers’ eternal love for 70s West London bohemia is oozing in every single piece of their spring-summer 2017 look-book. Discussing their inspirations, Luella named everyone from Zandra Rhodes to David Hockney, who were the quintessence of colour, partying and fashion back in the times. It’s absorbing to see how these two female designers evolve during their design process, and succeed in keeping it true to their style.

 We’ve got Savile Row-inspired tailoring, all covered in multi-colour ostrich feathers; those thick knit sweaters became even softer with fluffy, purple fur sleeves; loosely fit, pink shirt was a nod to David Bowie’s legendary style. The musician’s spirit, who passed away in 2016, is present in these beautifully decadent, yet alluring clothes. As Luella Bartley told Vogue, “Talking about Bowie’s influence on myself or any other creative person is like talking about how oxygen influences the breathing process. Bowie, as the Thin White Duke in a double-breasted linen suit, felt particularly apt to illustrate a vague idea we had to imbue the Hillier Bartley woman with a louche ’30s glamour.” Just like the legendary musician, the Hillier Bartley woman has a style tendency for androgyny – note the importance of English tailoring, from cool blazers to high-rise trousers. Hillier Bartley isn’t about styling, though – if you separate the clothes from the looks, they appear to be (slightly eclectic) essentials of your on-the-go, everyday gear.

For autumn-winter 2016, the designers went for flea-market cool, which is so timeless and eternally relevant in London. One of the coats virtually looks like a re-cut and re-shaped Persian rug. A satin robe is worn as an evening dress according to the designers, with a pair of moccasins. Icy blue, velvet suit with a black, ribbed turtleneck underneath is a total-look worth investing. The intricately embroidered gown is a cherry on the cake – I’m obsessed with the way the oriental motif contrasts with the entire collection filled with feather elements, leopard spots and romantic, Fleetwood Mac flair. Oh, and the bags line is blooming, which is mostly on Katie’s part. From ‘Bunny’ clutches to collar-box bags with lilac tassels, the range is… yummy.

Looking forward to see Hillier Bartley’s next step in 2017!

West London Love. Hillier Bartley SS17

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Surprisingly, Luella Bartley and Katie Hillier decided to reveal their newest collection during the schedule time of Paris Fashion Week, temporarily leaving behind the idea of see it now, buy it now they did in previous seasons. So, what’s Hillier Bartley like for spring-summer 2017? The designers’ eternal love for 70s West London bohemia is oozing in every single piece of this look-book. Discussing their inspirations, Luella named everyone from Zandra Rhodes to David Hockney, who were the quintessence of colour, partying and fashion back in the times. It’s absorbing to see how these two female designers evolve during their design process, and succeed in keeping it true to their style. Hillier Bartley classics? Best expressed in seasonless kimono jackets, high-waisted pants and fringed scarves.

If other designers focused so much on consistency, their collections would instantly become  monotonous. At Hillier Bartley, consistency is a base for having true, fashion fun. For spring, we’ve got Savile Row-inspired tailoring, all covered in multi-colour ostrich feathers; those thick knit sweaters (a continuation of autumn-winter 2016) became even softer with fluffy, purple fur sleeves; loosely fit, pink shirt was a nod to David Bowie’s style. Hillier Bartley isn’t about styling, though – if you separate the clothes from the looks, they appear to be (slightly eclectic) essentials of your on-the-go, everyday gear.

Also, take a look at Katie’s accessories (this time, accompanied by Manolo Blahnik’s different-colour suede pumps) in the season’s bold fuchsia and orange accents. From illustrated clutches with tassel charms to paperclip earrings and signature bunny-bags, Hillier Bartley wardrobe welcomes brilliant, new additions.

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Female Contrast. Hillier Bartley AW16

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Tom Ford might have just started his new retail model – but Hillier Bartley isn’t new in this topic. Entering September, it’s the perfect (and most practical) time to think of refreshing your autumn wardrobe. Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley are here to help, in time, with their see-now, buy-now collection. The British duo has already built a ‘set’ of signatures: banana pants which  do look flattering; top-notch suiting in Savile Row manner; feminine dresses with chic tassell-scarves. Also, Hillier Bartley is recognized for its Anglomania attire: at a first glance, the idea is based on the wardrobe of an English-aristocrat, who belongs to an gentlemen’s club. But then, the elegance blurs with Bowie-esque, out-of-this-world knack. With that said, don’t forget Hillier Bartley is a womenswear label, filled with women’s clothes created by women.

For autumn-winter 2016, the designers went for flea-market cool, which is so timeless and eternally relevant in London. One of the coats virtually looks like a re-cut and re-shaped Persian rug. A satin robe is worn as an evening dress according to the designers, with a pair of moccasins. Icy blue, velvet suit with a black, ribbed turtleneck underneath is a total-look worth investing. The intricately embroidered gown is a cherry on the cake – I’m obsessed with the way the oriental motif contrasts with the entire collection filled with feather elements, leopard spots and romantic, Fleetwood Mac flair. Oh, and the bags line (Hillier’s part) is blooming. From ‘Bunny’ clutches to collar-box bags with lilac tassels, the range is wide and… yummy.

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Elusive Glamour. Hillier Bartley SS16

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The beginning of London Fashion Week for autumn-winter 2016 season begins with… a spring-summer 2016 collection coming straight from Hillier Bartley‘s studio. The brand, formed by Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley, breaks the fashion system with the philosophy of “see it now, buy it now” – but don’t mistake this statement with Jeremy Scott’s Moschino sweatshirts which appear on-line a few minutes after the fashion show. Hillier Bartley looks at retail in a very realistic and smart way – the summer collection appears right now in the stores, and it feels just as fresh as the AW16 outings we see now from the other designers – the thing is that you don’t need to wait six months for one of these divine silk blouses or adorable tassel bags!

The London-based label’s second collection is as desirable, as inspiring One thing’s sure – David Bowie is present in these beautifully decadent, alluring clothes. As Luella Bartley told Vogue, “Talking about Bowie’s influence on myself or any other creative person is like talking about how oxygen influences the breathing process. Bowie, as the Thin White Duke in a double-breasted linen suit, felt particularly apt to illustrate a vague idea we had to imbue the Hillier Bartley woman with a louche ’30s glamour.” Just like the legendary musician, the Hillier Bartley woman has a fashion tendency of androgyny – note the importance of English tailoring, from the linen blazers to high-rise trousers. However, the designers behind the brand introduced something much more feminine, like the satin skirts and fringed crepe dresses we’ve seen in AW15 look-book. Hillier Bartley redefines “sexy”, but in a totally different, very elusive way.

The collection is available here.

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