Rihanna for River Island SS13

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As global superstar Rihanna is spotted stepping out in an ensemble from her much-anticipated style collaboration with fashion brand River Island, I turn my attention to the treasure trove of discoveries awaiting us for the new season.

Delving into the fashion cave that is the River Island press office in London, I was met with a frisson of activity as the fashion press climbed over one another to photograph rails bearing elegantly striped Fifties-style dresses alongside vintage-look leather jackets, others presenting a tactile fusion of fringing, sheer and suedes and still more punctuating Sixties monochrome with punches of neon colour.

The SS13 range embraces a host of styles with Nineties references jumping off the catwalks and into the high street fray by way of denim. The brand’s Denim Couture collection takes the classic and simple notion of blue and white and transforms it into an updated aesthetic that makes the long denim skirt I worn by my mother in high school cool again. Reworked into asymmetric glory with ruffle embellishment, the denim skirt you can tell is the product of its sibling, that pair of denim jeans that endures through every sartorial cycle. The jeans themselves are decorative and distressed in their summer reimagining, paired with flowing, loose tops adorned with heavy embellishment while the feathered and beaded accessories add yet a further dimension.

The jumpsuit remains a staple of high street fashion, though is brought in line with the carefree look attributed to this next season, featuring the beaded detail which calls to mind lazy summer days spent at musical festivals, denim jacket draped loosely over shoulders and straw hat perched atop tousled waves, makeshift mojito in hand. The beading and tie-died look of the denim gives way to Wild West chic in the form of fringed kimonos layered over sheer maxi dresses, as the brand’s Road Trip collection takes shape. A palette of creams, blacks and tans complements the marriage of leather, suede and fringing which goes from cut-off embellished shorts to beaded black suede bag. Festival glamour at its best.

Brightly coloured high top sneakers, khaki satin shorts and a wash of metallics convey an urban military sensibility for Army Lux, while ladylike silhouettes are celebrated in the Retro range with soft violets, fondant pinks and powder blues teamed with block heels and adorned clutches. Black and white checked leather mini-skirts and Mary Quant-esque shifts dominate the Space Mono collection while fabulous pattern and embellishment convey a Nineties streetwear vibe, complete with trainers, baseball caps emblazoned with words like ‘famous’ and enormous bags.

Elements of the various collections are reflected in the line for mini fashionistas, from Fifties style dresses in sherbet orange and white lace, Aztec print, floral appliquéd watercolour and canary yellow to funky Nineties graffiti print leggings and retro print tees. Lashings of denim articulate the range, from shorts bearing colourful prints to jackets and jeans.

So the fashion outlook for spring summer 2013 is undoubtedly sunny, with bouts of heavy embellishment and denim forecast throughout, but when the sun goes to bed the stars come out to play, including one star in particular. The collection from Rihanna will be unveiled in full in February 2013 – in time for my birthday – but with details being closely guarded we can but guess as to what will accompany the slouchy navy hooded jumpsuit with silver buttons adorning the star. All we know is the designs spring from Rihanna’s personal style as she has created items fit for her own wardrobe. The campaign for the collection stars British model Jourdan Dunn, photographed at the talented hands of Mario Sorrenti.

Forget the snow, bring on summer…


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