On Sunday, in their native Scotland, Chvrches performed what Lauren Mayberry described as “probably the rainiest gig we’ve ever done but one of the most fun”—until the trolls came out, snarling that the lead singer’s get-up was too “revealing.” Mayberry had been wearing a sheer black dress over a vinyl bra and high-waisted briefs, and she accessorized the whole lot with combat boots and a slash of purple eye makeup. Her styling had, in fact, downplayed the inherent romance of the piece’s airy ruffles in favor of a tougher, don’t mess-with-me-vibe. “People have tried to weaponize my gender against me since the start of my career,” she wrote in a long response in her Stories. “I will continue dressing like a gothic Powerpuff Girl with Big Witch Energy, and I hope that you’ll all do whatever your version of that is too. Everyone else will just have to deal with it. My body, my life, my choice.”
In this case, her choice featured a dress by Roberts-Wood, a small, innovative, British label that walks the line between art, fashion, and technology. The designer, who studied to be a doctor before changing course, is currently in residence at Alexander McQueen’s talent incubating Sarabande Foundation and has developed a no-sew technique of hand-linking pre-engineered pieces into garments, notably those with “stitchless ruffles.” Her Fall 2019 collection included engineered prints that combined sketches from Gray’s Anatomy juxtaposed with 16th-century Dutch florals. At the presentation, Roberts-Wood constructed one of her dresses in real-time as women who inspired her posed and drew while wearing the clothes, which were made in limited editions for Dover Street Market.
It’s there that the designer thinks both Lauryn Hill and Lauren Mayberry purchased the Roberts-Wood pieces that they wore to perform at the Glastonbury and Latitude music festivals, respectively. This was a happy surprise to the designer. “It’s incredible when these things happen organically because pushing celebrity dressing is not something we’ve ever done as a brand,” she says.
Mayberry’s team has been in touch with R|W since Latitude; the dress that upset the trolls was a loan. “As someone super talented with really fierce independent style and a woman who owns her space in a way that’s really inspiring, I’m really happy that Lauren would choose to wear my brand to perform in,” says Roberts-Wood. “I want the women who choose to wear my pieces to feel empowered and amazing.” She adds that seeing Hill in her clothing felt, quite simply, surreal: “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was the first album my brother gave me!” Another win for womankind.
Originally Appeared on Vogue