Vivienne Westwood FW18-19 Don’t Get Killed

“I’m a fashion designer and activist. You all know what I’m up to, I use fashion as a vehicle for activism to stop climate change and mass extinction of life on earth. The need to live in harmony with the planet is a matter of life and death.


The best thing I’ve ever written is ‘Buy Less, Choose Well, Make it Last’.


Over the years, I’ve designed so many t-shirts, pamphlets and posters, and it occurred to me that I have enough graphics to do a packet of playing cards which amounts to my complete message. Collect the cards, connect the cards. I have been releasing one a week on the social media – – but, we need to time the release of the printed pack according to our strategy, because by putting the cards into practise we have a strategy to save the world. Recently, I’ve released almost all of the Clubs. Clubs mean War, and this theme runs through our collection. Sow the whirlwind, Reap the whirlwind – a shield of terror designed for Warchild. I made prayer flags out of the clubs as décor. Don’t forget: collect the cards, connect the cards brings peace.”

First, I want to talk about my favourite coat in the world: the Princess coat. It buttons on the masculine side, it’s unisex therefore economical – swap clothes. The models for this shoot are dressing as cross-gender. We love Harris Tweed and we love wool, because wool is environmentally friendly at the moment, because we do have sheep – and we say, thank you to the sheep because wool serves the naked ape better than any other fibre. The Princess coat is adventurous, it reminds me of the latest version of a travelling coat, from a time when you travelled by horse and cart and stagecoach. It’s in a giant check, in army camouflage colour, last year it was in black. We do one every winter to suit the theme of the collection. It’s an icon. We’re excited to introduce a second coat fabric that is in undyed wool, in tweed mix from light to dark, straight from the sheep’s back.


Camouflage green runs through the collection, for example, it’s in Melton coating. Also in an incredibly bright red Melton, which suits the war theme. Melton is a felted fabric, traditional as army uniform, leaving raw edges. There is a camouflage print for tailoring, shirts and dresses. Another army colour, I was interested to discover is Mountbatten Pink, introduced by Lord Mountbatten in World II, it looks like a grey which changes to mauve with the atmosphere of dawn and dusk. We’ve used it in coordination with the camouflage for knitwear and in tailoring for hemp. Hemp is remarkable, qualifies as the most sustainable and body-friendly fabric possible. We want all our pieces to be iconic, to the extent that we’ve copied perfectly, a naval jacket from the pirate collection, navy Melton trimmed in white lace.


We have Saville row shirts in colourful folk stripes, and this continues the army theme: could come from peasant revolutions from the four corners of the world. Sunset glows in a pink and green tartan which belongs to the jeans section. Like the rest of the collection the jeans are iconic Westwood – we do great body-conscious trousers and great body-conscious jeans.”


–          Vivienne Westwood

Diane Pernet

A LEGENDARY FIGURE IN FASHION and a pioneer of blogging, Diane is a respected journalist, critic, curator and talent-hunter based in Paris. During her prolific career, she designed her own successful brand in New York, costume designer, photographer, and filmmaker.