Holly Fulton Fall 2012 RTW

It may only have been midday, but the lascivious thread running through Holly Fulton’s fall runway collection—borrowed from D.H. Lawrence’s classic tale Lady Chatterley’s Lover—cranked up the heat in the British Fashion Council show space at London’s Somerset House on Tuesday. Palm fronds appeared to lazily sway and exotic insects flitted across Fulton’s clinging sheaths, silken shifts, and pencil skirts while models sauntered down the runway to an instrumental of Roxy Music’s “Love Is the Drug.”

Any who may be craving more of the Scottish-born designer’s signature Art Deco prints won’t be disappointed. Only this time around, they took the form of clandestine greenhouses where the aristocratic Chatterley and her working-class gardener might have hidden.

Indeed, sometimes those geometric formations misted over into a blur of cobalt and fuchsia (two hues Fulton, who is known for her liberal use of color, restricted herself to this season). Other times, it was what appeared to be the curvaceous, extended outline of insect wings that wound down the length of a sheath.

The designer’s familiar use of embellishment made appearances in the Deco-inspired accessories and, most strikingly, on a boxy, gilt beaded top, paired with a long, lean, skirt that had been sliced into from hem to knee to create wafts of flapping pleats.

There was something of the sixties in the abbreviated silhouettes, which were further emphasized when Fulton lightly layered intarsia knit cashmere turtlenecks underneath shifts or paired them with pants (a collaboration with Caerlee mill in her native Scotland). Some looks, which featured a scattered mass of butterfly prints, felt something of an anticlimax in their youthfulness, but overall, this collection, with its smoldering prints and flirtatious cuts, will have Fulton’s acolytes adequately dressed for a seductive season.

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