By Li-mei Hoang
LONDON (Reuters) - Designer Christopher Bailey sent his models down the runway in an explosion of rainbow-colored metallic trench coats as part of his latest spring/summer collection for Burberry.
Models strode the catwalk in corsets, pencil skirts and sleek silk dresses in raspberry pinks, emerald greens and sapphire blues, laced with a metallic edge.
Trench coats, a Burberry staple which reaches back to the company's foundation, appeared in a variety of different forms. Classic styles were covered in colored metallic lace, capes came in both long and short versions and cropped jackets came with boxy shoulders and slim silhouettes.
The collection was inspired by Norman Parkinson photographs from the 1940s and 50s, Bailey said.
Burberry's chief creative officer said he looked into the archives for inspiration, where he found corsets and capes the brand had produced in the early 1900s, and combined the elements to create his latest collection.
"The collection was a bit more joyful and quite sassy and a bit sexy," Bailey told reporters backstage.
"It's about taking those kind of authentic signature DNA elements from what Burberry is about, our heritage and our history. But then making them, of the moment and kind of giving them a spirit."
Burberry held three events to celebrate their latest collection, which incorporated live video streaming and social media across the world to its fans.
"We were kind of looking at it in three different ways and we did different messaging for each different audience and community but they all were part of the same energy," Bailey said.
"Fashion is also about entertainment and people are intrigued and excited about fashion and I think when you do a show, it's kind of a perfect opportunity for people to feel your brand and your image and kind of these ideas, music, lights and beautiful girls."
The star-studded event was attended by U.S. Vogue Editor Anna Wintour, tennis player Andy Murray and burlesque performer Dita von Teese.
"The coats are always one of my favorite things, but I'm really loving all the accessories right now too," she told Reuters. "When Christopher swings towards my direction and does retro, I always find myself in the store buying important pieces to have in my wardrobe."
The designer addressed concerns over Burberry's future following the company's profit warning last week that had many investors worried about a slowdown in the luxury market.
"I'm not going to pretend it's not challenging out there but I think what's important is that we stay very true to our DNA, to our heritage but also excite people," he told Reuters.
(Reporting by Li-mei Hoang, editing by Paul Casciato)