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Topshop Unique's Tough Girls: Fall 2012

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Photos via Getty Images

Topshop Unique always pulls a cool crowd at London Fashion Week, and Sunday's show was no exception: Pixie Geldof, Leigh Lezark, Olivia Palermo and Azealia Banks all nibbled on scotch eggs and sipped champagne before the show began in the official Topshop venue in London Bridge.

The showing from Unique was a radical departure from last season's Cleopatra-fest, this time focusing on a grown-up take on military tailoring. The jackets and dresses were a little more streamlined than we're used to from Topshop. This could be the result of newly appointed creative director Kate Phelan, formerly of British Vogue, but it worked well on the whole. The collection tapped into Topshop's hip and youthful DNA but kept it directional with fat-pleated skirts, velvet trousers, asymmetric biker jackets and sheepskin caps. The color palette—aubergine, olive green, and charcoal—and the emphasis on outsized outerwear reminded us a little of a younger, hipper Burberry. There was a lot here to look forward to for fall: a chunky dark velvet coat, for one, and some faux-alligator handbags.

The show closed on a high note, showing off one of the things Topshop does best: shiny, glittering minidresses perfect for the party season. Worn under an unzipped olive parka and with some gunmetal lace-up booties, these dresses looked a lot like something Alexa Chung (seated front row, of course) would be street-style snapped in. Expect them to sell out when Unique hits TopShop stores in New York, Chicago, and online this fall.— Ana Kinsella
· Topshop USA [Official site]
· All Fashion Week Fall 2012 coverage [Racked]