Sienna and Savannah Miller seek inspiration in American West for London catwalk show

By Gregory Katz, AP
Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sienna and Savannah Miller design catwalk show

LONDON — You had to use your imagination to see the influence of Joni Mitchell, Jack Kerouac and director Wim Wenders in the impressive catwalk show by actress Sienna Miller and designing sister Savannah Miller at London Fashion Week Saturday.

But those were the inspirations the unique designing team of Twenty8Twelve cited for their spring and summer 2011 collection, a focal point of Saturday’s shows on Day Two of fashion week.

The crowd at the Old Sorting Office in central London seemed to include an unusually high number of young blonde women who styled their hair exactly like Sienna Miller — blonde and slightly wild, often parted down the middle.

Even the models used the Sienna hairstyle and big sunglasses to give them the casual, glamorous look associated with the actress, who has starred in “Factory Girl,” ”Layer Cake” and other major films.

Known for creating a sexy rock chick look, Sienna and Savannah Miller did not disappoint their fans, winning over the crowd with slinky mini-dresses, tight black cocktail dresses, and a series of jersey outfits, some with revealing cutaways.

They offered a slouchy, comfortable look. There was a denim minidress with pink frilly details at the bottom, like a puffed up petticoat, and some lovely lacework and antique embroidery embellished other outfits as well.

Still, it was difficult to see the “our girl in the Nevada dessert” theme mentioned in the sisters’ publicity package, although there were many earthy tones in the collection.

Afterward, Savannah Miller — pronouncing herself exhausted and ready to rush home and see her kids — said she took some of her inspiration from early color photographs by Paul Oterbridge from that remote region of America, and from the films and books that depict it.

“I just love the colors, it’s really nothing more than that,” she said. Their mission statement cited Kerouac’s landmark beat novel “On the Road” as a major influence, along with Mitchell’s “Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter” album.

Actor Jude Law, Sienna Miller’s on-again-off-again sweetheart, pronounced the show a success after viewing it from a front-row perch.

“I don’t know how she finds the time to do it, but she spends lots and lots of time designing,” said Law, who particularly admired a short black cocktail dress and another outfit that features a white shirt styled with a small cape on the back.

Some of the outfits were deceptively simple, like a plain white tee paired with blue shirts and an undecorated white, lacy minidress with a narrow black belt. There were a few denim shirts, suggestive of the American West theme.

The sisters drew heavy applause when they walked out hand in hand at the end of the show to briefly wave to the crowd.


Topshop Unique went for a flamboyant, crystal coated collection, turning the disused Eurostar terminal in London’s Waterloo Station into a 2010 version of Studio 54.

Heavily applied crystal detail glittered on the bodies of dresses and sheer trains glided behind the strutting models, who floated down the catwalk in flares and breezy caftans that looked straight out of the 1970s. Each model was given an afro style hair do with candy colored highlights, while the shoes they wore were sky high, perspex platforms.

A pregnant Lily Allen sat in the front row, snapping her favorite looks.

Burnt orange, rust, scarlet, dusky rose and khaki were the statement colors in the collection, marbled together on billowing silks. Disco worthy catsuits came in white, copper and black.

“Unique delivered a collection different to most I’ve seen so far,” said stylist Polly Haywood. “Think 70s Miami beach glamour with sexy cutaway swimsuits and plenty of suede fringing.”


Designer Betty Jackson used a variety of fabrics and techniques to update the 1940s look in her spring and summer 2011 catwalk show Saturday.

Using the fashions worn by the women’s land army during World War II, she created a modern silhouette, with many outfits based on long length skirts and elegant tops. The colors were light brown and beige for the most part, although one outfit paired green hot pants with a green print silk top, and the collection did include a lime green minidress.

Many of the models wore oversize colored bracelets from American jewelry designer Alexis Bittar. Some were made of colored Lucite and ostrich feathers.


Osman’s spring and summer collection used woven, pliable patent leathers along with lightweight layered silks in a number of dramatic asymmetrical dresses, each individually cut for a distinctive look. Some of the clothes were denim, but they looked sophisticated, not catch-as-you-can casual.

He combined brown and beige with more springlike colors, including pink, yellow and apple green.

Most of his dresses were loose-fitting, while other designers have been choosing tight, form-fitting dresses for summer.

But the most dramatic piece was close-fitting, a full-length, asymmetrical dress that was black except for one portion that was an unusual glowing pink.

Associated Press Writer Eleanor Stephens contributed to this report.

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