london: club to catwalk

© v & a - installation image from the exhibition

london's post-war subcultures have been a global inspiration and contributed a great deal to the city's stature as a leading creative hub that it is today. currently on at the victoria & albert museum is club to catwalk, an exhibition which explores a creative explosion of london fashion in the 1980s. special club nights facilitated for suburban kids plenty of opportunities to dress up in the company of kindred yet equally bored spirits. early clubs such as billy’s, blitz and the club for heroes were small and attracted a selective crowd, but as the decade progressed, venues such as the huge camden palace and one-off warehouse parties began to attract much larger audiences.

although less intimate, they perpetuated the creative link between music, club and catwalk. this symbiotic relationship remained the defining characteristic of 1980s style. the interesting show traces this emerging theatricality in british fashion as the british capital’s vibrant and eclectic club scene influenced a new generation of designers. also celebrating iconic styles such as new romantic and high camp, and featuring more than 85 outfits worn by icons such as adam ant and leigh bowery, the exhibition explores how the creative relationship between catwalk and club wear helped reinvent british fashion [on through feb 16]. location: cromwell road [knightsbridge].

© v & a + derek ridgers - denim jacket blitz by levi's customized by leigh bowery [1986], trojan and mark at taboo [1986]