Daniel Lee showed his highly anticipated Burberry summer 2024 collection from beneath a green tent covered in tartan. Guests shuffled into London’s lush Highbury Fields—where the canopy was built on September 18 especially for the show—and were treated to cups of coffee done in Burberry Blue, Guinness bread, and eccles cakes from the British heritage brand’s Norman’s Cafe pop-up. As they took their seats in the green-carpeted space, attendees discovered hot water bottles (also in Burberry Blue) and blankets had been placed delicately on their chairs.
Lee’s focus for his sophomore runway presentation seemed to be all things accessories, with a special eye toward reinventing the historic trench coat that made the brand iconic. The designer opened his second coed Burberry show with an inky, charcoal, technical-looking version of the classic trench, belted low on the waist (a recurring theme throughout the collection), styled with a printed hobo bag and zippered mules—before turning up the volume on the classics. Popped-collar versions of the trench turned into sets mirroring skirt suits, leather vests toughened up the silhouette, and white-and-black pieces printed with chains and heavy tools reigned supreme. Elsewhere, the brand experimented with fruit-centric prints—like blue strawberry pants and matching tops, or abstracted cherries—knitted into shorts and sweater sets.
Lee has a subtle but magical touch when it comes to details and craft. Glimpses of that came through in some of the less casual separates that went down the runway: a silky ruched Burberry Blue jacket here, a grayish-green woven skirt with matching fringe there. When it came to footwear, Lee sent out a sort of hybrid-thong sandal-boot, along with lace-up heels covered in roses and chunky and flat glittery shoes. A range of crescent-shaped, cross-body hobos made of nylon will surely be the next big “It” bag for Burberry fans.
While Lee’s Burberry debut was brimming with extreme color-clashing and boldness, the second runway collection had more of a utilitarian feel with less of a maximal lean. It takes time for an aesthetic to build as a new creative director joins a house—and Lee’s nod to British culture and the archives is right on the mark for the next era of Burberry.