Images via M&S
Archive by Alexa was always going to cause a bit of a fashion buzz, what with perhaps one of the most stylish women on the planet putting her name towards a range as commercial and affordable as offered by M&S. A clever hybrid of throwback nostalgia coupled with the Chung effect equals a must have collection and a winning marketing ploy by M&S...or does it?
Well, in a word, yes. I was once again intrigued by the latest collection, having had the chance to preview it (thanks Sparks card!) on the Monday prior to the Tuesday launch. There were no real stand out pieces for me, this time; perhaps the Crown jacket or the Portland dress, but unlike the much hyped Harry blouse from the first collaboration, there was no single stand out must have. The press for this collection had been much less direct that for the prior; there were no press previews in magazines or websites and all we knew was that this range would have more of a touch of evening wear about it; sensible, considering the time of year.
The pieces are all named after streets in Leeds near to wear the M&S archive is situated and hence we are given the Kirkgate mini, the Elland shirt, the Templar coat; names which seem to uncannily fit the products as also being yet another throwback to the heritage of the brand. Fabrics are of the day and of the moment; vinyl, metallic and faux fur no doubt considered towards a younger M&S shopper, but classic woollens and smartly cut coats mean that there is something for everyone, regardless of age.
I've not bought anything from the collection so far, but I'll definitely be keeping an eye on it as there are a couple of things that I liked the look of. I ended up with rather a lot from the first range, most of which I've worn and enjoyed, so I will consider purchases from this range too.