Daniel Lee kept his show notes succinct for Burberry’s Spring/Summer 2024 collection, seven lines to be exact. In the brief address, he noted that the new collection — and his third for the house since becoming chief creative officer in 2022 — continues to honor its fashion legacy. However, the designer did have several surprises up his sleeves, including his reimagining of some of Burberry’s most iconic styles. A perfect example of this was his take on its outerwear and more technical items.
“We’re going hard into the trench coat, which is an obvious choice, but at the same time we’re trying to create new feelings of heritage, new symbols of the brand. There’s definitely an exploration of the more feminine side through the whole thing, because Burberry has traditionally always had a masculine association,” he said to Business of Fashion. “But I don’t think it’s necessarily feminine or masculine. There’s more fluidity. It’s about a more languid cut, more precious fabrics, like silk and viscose...”
Indeed, the new trench for the season comes with an interesting belt design that loops just below the hips instead of at the waist. The silhouette is cut slimmer and sharper to the body, while crafted in materials like its classic gabardine (a fabric invented by Thomas Burberry himself) and duchesse satin. In addition to the coats, Lee offered up the perfect transitional season staples like a knitted crop top for those 70-degree days, a floral skirt set in joyful primary hues of red and blue, plenty of polished button-down shirts, and smart tailored trousers. It seems one needn’t look elsewhere for streamlined, springtime pieces come next March.
Lee, who has a knack for creating the next It accessory (his past successes at Bottega Veneta with the Puddle Boots, Pouch Bag, and Stretch Sandals more than confirms this) may have just created Burberry’s must-have shoe for next year. Fans will love the thick-soled loafers he sent down the runway in colors like hunter green and ivory, featuring a giant silver buckle detail as the statement factor. “[Burberry is] synonymous with the weather and protection. Taking that spirit into the shoe meant making heels that are not too delicate, things that are easy to walk in outside, things that feel a little bit chunkier, a little bit more protective, not too precious; leathers that are meant to look like they could withstand time and the elements,” he said to BoF. For those who want a going-out shoe, your attention might go to the platform thong sandals also seen throughout the collection, coming in fiery red, cobalt blue, and black.
“For me, the use of metal, the zips, the hardware always give an element of punk, this kind of London DIY edge,” Lee said. He also incorporated this look into Burberry’s dresses via asymmetrical zippers and as an abstract print on the trenches, polished dresses, billowy tops, and shorts. The shiny metal even gleamed on the straps of his handbags. “What people respond to is a singular object. My role is really to distill the essence of the brand into that object, and I find often with accessories, you can do that in a stronger way,” he said, explaining why this design area is so important to him this season.
In another piece of the puzzle, Lee revealed to BoF that he felt inspired by the glowing, shiny effect on an archival trench, so he worked this sensory magic into his Spring 2024 ready-to-wear pieces. There’s a uniform sheen to everything, from the cotton outerwear and the tailored separates to the one-shoulder evening dresses, that gives the items a special edge. With this latest collection, it’s clear that Lee has found the perfect harmony between honoring Burberry’s fashion legacy and flexing his own creative muscles.
Ahead, see several of TZR’s favorite looks from Lee’s latest Spring 2024 lineup.