Bora Aksu SS 24 Runway BTS
Styled by: @leithclark
Head of MUA: @janeenwitherspoon_ using @lisaeldridgemakeup
Hair: @claire__grech using @lorealpro
“I wanted to go back to my roots for this collection,” said Bora Aksu ahead of the show, which was held on a balmy morning in the
gardens of the historic Good enough College, tucked away in a leafy corner of Bloomsbury. While Aksu’s brand may channel a very English spirit of whimsy, he’s keen to point out that its origins lie just as much in the
aesthetic sensibility of his home country of Turkey—which a recent trip to Istanbul allowed him to fully reconnect with. “When you’re not living there, you see things differently,” he added.
Aksu’s starting point was childhood memories of growing up surrounded by women: his mother would hand-knit dresses as he sat by her feet, he recalled, and his grandmother was an expert at crochet. (The fez hats dotted throughout the collection were actually made from upcycled offcuts of his mom’s unfinished blankets.) But Aksu decided to trace his design lineage even further back, too, nodding to the opulent textiles of the Ottoman Empire through silk gowns in duck egg blue and dusty pink embroidered with delicate floral motifs, as well as the hand- painted patterns of Iznik tiles, here recreated across layers of tulle and organza. All of Aksu’s frou-frou signatures—lacy trims, crochet, babydoll silhouettes, Peter Pan collars, bows galore—were present and correct, but the homages to his home country added a welcome touch of something more grounded, not least in the black and gold embroidered trims that rippled at the hems of a handful of looks towards the end. Through these moodier looks, Aksu showcased his ability to hit a sentimental note without veering towards the saccharine.
BTS Photographer: Zuzu Valla
Zuzu Valla is a self-taught photographer from Slovakia currently living and working in the UK. Zuzu was brought up in a traditional Slovak family, growing up in the last years of strong communism regime and social transformation of Slovakia (formerly Czechoslovakia). Her father was a multiple boxing champion of Czechoslovakia while her mother was a housewife raising three children in a small town. Zuzu’s grandfather was a keen amateur photographer shooting in black and white, while her grandmother had been using special painting method to colour his photographs. Zuzu started her interest in photography almost by accident in her late 20s. After being disappointed by using a mobile phone camera. She defines her own recognisable signature style, exploring multiple layers of distinctive human beauty, focusing mainly on fashion, portraiture, and commercial photography. She likes to push the boundaries of the industry and magazines in terms of beauty standards, often working with models with disabilities. Her work has been exhibited in Paris, London, Hungary, Iran, Spain, and Slovakia.