Burberry has been a centerpiece of fashion week in recent seasons as Bailey has helped revitalize the brand after years of drift. Staged in a temporary building erected in Kensington Gardens just across from the Royal Albert Hall, the Burberry extravaganza drew top models, including Lily Donaldson, and American Vogue editor Anna Wintour along with stylish Alexa Chung.
Bailey dipped into the Burberry archives for his inspiration for the Autumn Winter 2011 collection, inspired by images of swinging '60s icon Jean Shrimpton.He married that vision of wide-eyed English chic with his musing on the weather. He played on the theme of coat dressing, combining different textures — fur with tweed or knits with leather trim.
Bailey is credited with giving the company a cutting edge image while still paying homage to its traditional, more conservative designs. So there was plenty of plaid — as one might expect with Burberry — but it went far beyond the traditional check.
Coats came in mustard or black or red — some with voluminous sleeves. One take off on the classic trench came in white wool knit — a combination that nodded to its popular design while adding a chunky 'Let's warm the toes around the fire' feel.The company's military heritage was evident in the epaulettes, buckles and braiding on many of the coats and dresses, but the clothes were soft, feminine and witty.