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When a new designer unveils her first collection for the ailing brand… Will Cath Kidston bloom again?

There are few firms in the fashion firmament more apart than the painfully cool Alexander McQueen and Home Counties icon Cath Kidston.

But Holly Marler, Cath Kidston’s new creative director, bridges that gap. She worked for Alexander McQueen for five years and worked with the man himself. Now she’s chosen to revive a brand that, once a global sensation, has seen its fortunes plummet – all 60 UK stores were closed in April 2020.

Holly’s resume also includes Temperley and Liberty, and her experience is evident in this, her first Cath Kidston collection. The prints work best on children’s clothes – my daughter’s favorite was the pink dress with Peter Pan collar (second from right).

Kids Pinafore, £35, cathkidston.com;  top, £39, tights, £12, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com

Kids Pinafore, £35, cathkidston.com; top, £39, tights, £12, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com

Dress, £85, cathkidston.com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Dress, £85, cathkidston.com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Dress, £85, cathkidston.com; shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Kids dress, £42, cathkidston.com, bow tie, £12, and socks, £7, pepaandcompany.  com;  shoes, £76, papouelli.com

Kids dress, £42, cathkidston.com, bow tie, £12, and socks, £7, pepaandcompany.  com;  shoes, £76, papouelli.com

Dress, £95, and bag, £65, cathkidston.  com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Dress, £95, and bag, £65, cathkidston.  com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Pictured left: children’s dress, £42, cathkidston.com, bow tie, £12, and socks, £7, pepaandcompany. com; shoes, £76, papouelli.com. Pictured right: dress, £95, and bag, £65, cathkidston.com; shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Pictured left: children's dress, £40, cathkidston.  com;  tights, £12, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com.  Pictured right: dress, £95, cathkidston.com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Pictured left: children's dress, £40, cathkidston.  com;  tights, £12, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com.  Pictured right: dress, £95, cathkidston.com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Pictured left: children’s dress, £40, cathkidston. com; tights, £12, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com. Pictured right: dress, £95, cathkidston.com; shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

The mini-me trend continues to be a big trend this season, and the same floral print is available in women’s wear in the viscose crepe Forever tea dress (second from right).

The same-shape dress, a wearable puff shoulder, V-neck midi, comes in a winter-friendly design with black back and mid-blue (far right). For those getting tired of the midi, there’s a more daring dress (far left), a mini made of polyester, which comes in black or red for the holidays.

My money goes to the bags, both the oversized shoppers and the quilted shoulder bags, which are bestsellers. They match the prints, but what used to be seen as cringey matchy-matchy, fashion now calls cool co-ords.

It remains to be seen whether the opponents will put their knives away (Cath himself once said, “People love it and want a little bit of it, or want to stab us”), but there’s a lot to love in this new collection.

Children's dress, £40, cathkidston.com;  socks, £7, and hair bow, £6, pepandcompany.com;  shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com

Children's dress, £40, cathkidston.com;  socks, £7, and hair bow, £6, pepandcompany.com;  shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com

Children’s dress, £40, cathkidston.com; socks, £7, and hair bow, £6, pepandcompany.com; shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com

Pictured left: Kids' top, £26, cathkidston.com;  apron, £52, socks, £7, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com.  Pictured right: dress, £95, cathkidston.com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Pictured left: Kids' top, £26, cathkidston.com;  apron, £52, socks, £7, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com.  Pictured right: dress, £95, cathkidston.com;  shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

Pictured left: Kids’ top, £26, cathkidston.com; apron, £52, socks, £7, and shoes, £52, lacoquetakids.com. Pictured right: dress, £95, cathkidston.com; shoes, £229, lkbennett.com

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