As with his Autumn/Winter men's collection, Christopher Raeburn's women's collection is inspired by intrepid polar pioneers as captured in Icelandic photographer Ragnar Axelsson’s haunting exhibition 'Last Days of The Arctic'.
Axelsson's evocative images highlight the determination, stoicism and strength of the female explorer - such as Louise Boyd, the first woman to travel to the north pole - and stimulated Raeburn's ongoing interest in protection and preparation.
The seasonal theme is masterfully realised in a collection of heavy outerwear, layered with softer, delicate textures evocative of polar landscapes, ice flows and the glimmering lights of the Aurora Borealis.
"We've done a lot in terms of fabric innovation, and we've really pushed things a lot further for our womenswear and I hope that it's been a really good result," Raeburn says.
Raeburn continues his commitment to manufacturing in the UK, with wool textile company Hainsworth in Yorkshire. The signature Raeburn military detail and functionality is juxtaposed with surprisingly feminine silhouettes.
"These pieces here, we're really proud of. Each season we work with Hainsworth who do all the ceremonial cloth for the British military; they've been doing it since 1783. So we collaborate with them, we use their fabrics and we hope that what you see here is really something special," Raeburn says.
Knitwear features for the first time this season including 100 per cent Merino wool sweaters sporting the polar bear motif, the latest in a line of Raeburn's playful animal mascots.
"The Merino wool sweaters are really light, really comfortable but very warm. I'm very pleased," he says.
The signature Christopher Raeburn modern sweat fabric (90% wool, 10% Nylon) features in dresses and raglans with contrast panels in the shoulder, a trompe l'oeil that conjures the straps of the rucksacks worn by the polar explorers.
Raeburn has also created a distinctive poetic digital print which is applied to a variety of materials including wool: a mélange of illustrations found in 1930s Russian fairytales layered together to create a detailed three-dimensional world of sculptural icescapes, vast skies and vivid sunlight.