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Burberry Prorsum Pre-Fall 2014: Arts and Crafts for the English Set

Warm, inviting colors, silken jacquards and perhaps next year's biggest street-style must-have, right this way...
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Burberry Prorsum's Pre-Fall collection is a deep dive into traditional British craftwork. Though it's more celebratory than revelatory, label boss Christopher Bailey's experiments with texture and volume are nonetheless rewarding.

The collection draws inspiration from the Arts and Crafts movement in the late 19th century, both aesthetically and philosophically -- decorative, William Morris-style patterning is a central motif. And many key fabrics are British-made, a nod to the movement's focus on homegrown craftsmanship. Gleaming, silken jacquard, woven on vintage tie looms, elevates trousers and skirts. Both unique and wearable, they have a subtle sheen -- you can almost see the prints springing to life. Credit Bailey for his sense of proportion, too -- in one look, he offers a soft, inviting Scottish wool cocoon coat paired expertly with trim, cropped trousers.

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Burberry's global reach is a sub-theme of the collection, represented through graphics depicting notable buildings in some of the label's most important global markets. A sweater featuring Shanghai's World Financial Center, a T-shirt with a print of Paris' Notre Dame cathedral -- they're witty pieces with the potential to crop up on street style blogs à la the Kenzo tiger crewneck, but they somewhat distract from the rest of the collection's resolutely British sensibility.

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