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SINGAPORE – After years of showing his collections at London Fashion Week, homegrown designer Ashley Isham made a triumphant return to show his latest Autumn Winter 2013 collection in his hometown of Singapore, on day four of Audi Fashion Festival 2013.

Of course, top Singaporean model Sheila Sim opened the show, which had a futuristic slant to it – all the models wore liquid leggings and black plastic visors. The opening look, a navy and charcoal grey full coat came with a stiffened collar and exaggerated shoulders, set the tone for the rest of the collection.

AFF 2013: Ashley Isham

Once audiences could stop looking at the visors and leggings long enough to let the futuristic reference pass and actually pay attention to the clothes, a more distinctive influence – sports luxe – came through. Leather was clearly a key fabric for the collection – there were leather panels on skirts, leather sleeves, leather strips down the sides of sequinned dresses and leather on waistbands.

On closer inspection, the exaggerated shoulders and boxy silhouette seemed to reference an American football linebacker, but made more glamorous with the use of novel materials like neoprene.

The sombre colour palette of navy, black, charcoal, white, army green and grey played up the sportswear-influence and a recurrent component of the collection were the black zips that ran down the backs of dresses and tops.

A few looks on, though, and the sport luxe feel seemed to fade, with a sudden and surprising injection of tapestry-like flowers on a knee-length coat and a subsequent dress. There was also a couple of looks that involved a tropical print.

AFF 2013: Ashley Isham

Finally, it started to morph into evening wear, Isham’s signature style, with shiny embellishments leading the way.

The standout evening wear piece belonged to a metallic grey fishtail dress embellished with sparkling stones and a silvery-grey train – but it was the model who really showed it off with perfect flair, she received instantaneous applause from the audience.

Isham’s Autumn Winter 2013 collection was devoid of heavy wool fabrics, instead there was plenty of jersey, which is interesting for an autumn winter range. Perhaps, this collection was designed with Singaporean shoppers in mind?