16Arlington is a brand suited to fashion magpies: those who are attracted to everything that glitters and glitters. Founded in 2017 by the Italian designer duo Marco Capaldo and his late partner Federica ‘Kikka’ Cavenati, the label fuses Scandinavian minimalism and elegant tailoring with a strong dose of glam in the form of crystals, sequins, diamonds and feathers that are now a signature flourish.
Described as “dressed up with stories to tell the morning after,” 16Arlington’s SS23 collection was unveiled at Bloomsbury’s Yeomanry House, an ancient training room built in the early 20th century. A white cube complete with wrought iron imperial staircase and parquet floors, the back wall of the venue was painted in Forget-Me-Not blue, setting the tone for the collection in more ways than one.
The front row was made up of Lambeth musician Joy Crookes, influencers Declan Chan and Julia Hobbs, and designer Conner Ives. Model Adwoa Aboah and stylist Harry Lambert – who is responsible for looking after Harry Styles and Emma Corrin’s wardrobes – were also present and correct. As the bass vibrated through the speakers, elegant satin coats that skimmed the floor, precision tailored jackets and giant marabou feather outerwear in powder blue, black and cream made their way down the runway.
Prince of Wales checks and snakeskin prints dot the collection, the latter found on shiny coats and skirts with bold thigh slits, sheer knit cardigans and tank tops. The cast of models (which included ES magazine cover star Paloma Elsesser) staggered on the platform clogs which were given a 16Arlington makeover through the addition of crystals and crisscross detailing. Evening wear, in which the label excels, was shimmering with strapless column dresses and black leather mini skirts decorated with sparkling studs.
16Arlington has been led by Marco Capaldo since the sudden death of his wife and creative partner in 2021. The moving notes of the show noted that “Cavenati’s unstoppable energy can be felt in every atom of Arlington’s 16 universe”.
The Kikka bag, named after her, is present in this collection. He was also worn ubiquitously during this London Fashion Week, carried in the arms of fashion editors and influencers alike. What better tribute could Capaldo make than to create unforgettable dresses for women to honor a woman who will never be forgotten.