In her personal letter, that she wrote to her audience, Vivienne Westwood mentioned that her “medieval pilgrims must be austere, serious and festive”, that her Spring 2014 outfits for her Gold Label have to be more “more spirit, than flesh”.
Considering that Westwood and her co-designer, and husband, Andreas Kronthaler, were already keen on medieval references last season, we expected a jolly mess of Westwood's Gothic inspired looks, including irregular cuts, dark hues, and voluminous fits – and yes, they were not to be missed.
But it wasn't a heroic peripeteia of knights and dragons, as Vivienne Westwood decided to dedicate her fashion to the small folks. As she further suggested in the show note, you have to consider small things, if you want to get the bigger picture: “A couple of years ago, I went with Andreas to Canterbury. There was a service in the cathedral, and we weren't allowed in the splendor of the nave and alter. I'm so glad, because instead, we explored the cloisters and vaults within the environs of the building, and I felt all along that I was wandering in the presence of ordinary people, who lived in a different world to mine […].”
Thus, her torn apart, randomly pinned, layered and draped looks, were worn by models, who had mud-splashes on their faces, and sported with a Shepherd's crook and leave-crowns, that could be interpreted as a humble substitute for dandy walking sticks, and tiaras.
But let's not forget Westwood's words – she told us that her "pilgrims" had to be "festive". Floral head-pieces, and eye-popping kitten and flower prints, on colorful tops, sheer long skirts, and frilled mini-dresses, finally turned the medieval pilgrim into a modern-day gypsy. Then, the runway music was paced by a funny mix of gloomy rock riffs, and Walt Disney worthy music, that perfectly matched Westwood's “austere-festive”-contrast; a quiet humble fashion statement, in the end, as humble as luxury can get.