Bora Aksu was immediately hailed as ‘one to watch’ upon showing his first collections in London, upon graduating from the prestigious Central Saint Martin’s. Turkish-born Bora established his label immediately after graduation and his collections were greeted with much enthusiasm by the great and the powerful fashion critics.
There followed a slew of awards and being stocked by the world’s top stores. Aksu also extended himself beyond the traditional parameters of fashion, trying his hand at costume design for contemporary dance. Perhaps it was this more theatrical experience that led him to work with the Artisan Armour Group, the company that produced the costume armour for films like ‘Troy’, ‘Alexander’ and ‘King Arthur’. Bora Aksu’s own nod to age-old craft of protective battle wear cropped up as sculptural one-off leather and armour body pieces in his 2007 collection, much to the delight of the audience and media.
Now a seasoned trooper of the fashion circus, his SS16 collection sees him delving into his own childhood as a source of inspiration, more particularly, the magical sunlight of early morning on family holidays spent in Izmir. This Turkish influence clearly comes out in the palette. It starts with the softest of pinks and progresses to shocking fuchsia, and almost overpowering oranges and yellows. The extensive use of lace and other ‘cut-out’ fabrics also conjures up a strong sense of Turkish craft and decoration.
But, these are fused with other influences too. Aksu’s fascination with light and colour – a personal discovery of impressionism, you could say- led him to the work of Etheldreda Laing, an obscure early twentieth-century amateur photographer and artist. Her photos of her daughters in her colourful Oxford garden bring in a whiff of British nostalgia to the collection; structured jackets and the traditional linen of an English summer.
Bora Aksu designs extremely feminine clothes; romantic, frilly and ethereal. So, if you like your clothes girly, he’s usually a sure-fire bet for finding something that will suit your tastes. With their wafting layers of transparency, the garments in this collection range from virginal purity to dramatic and daring, showing a little flesh in all the right places.