With metallic trimmings and corset-like belts, Burberry’s trademark trench coats took centre stage at the brand’s catwalk relaunch under new creative chief Riccardo Tisci on Monday as it looks to lift sales with a move upmarket.

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Unfinished Sympathy #thankful #burberry #love

A post shared by Riccardo Tisci (@riccardotisci17) on Sep 17, 2018 at 4:03pm PDT

The former Givenchy star evoked the label’s British heritage, with pussybow blouses and pleated skirts setting the tone for a collection that featured sleek, tailored looks and showcased items such as new handbags – an area that Burberry wants to boost.

Luxury brands are jostling to carve out a following among younger shoppers, who are always on the lookout for eye-catching new designs, at a time when strong demand from Chinese consumers is boosting revenues across the industry.

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‘Kingdom’, @RiccardoTisci17’s debut runway show . #BurberryShow #LFW

A post shared by Burberry (@burberry) on Sep 17, 2018 at 1:24pm PDT

Faced with more sluggish sales than rivals such as Kering’s Gucci or LVMH’s Louis Vuitton, Marco Gobbetti, Burberry’s CEO is repositioning the 162-year old brand firmly in the luxury segment, where profit margins are higher and growth is more consistent.

Tisci, who took over from Burberry’s long-standing designer Christopher Bailey this year, brought some of the darker, sexy styles he is known for to the British brand, with slinky black evening gowns and sharp men’s suits – paraded down the runway in London by models with umbrellas slung over their backs.

The 44-year-old Italian designer referenced Burberry’s famed red, black and camel check in jacket linings.

Trench coats came with twists, including one lined with gold hoops worn by celebrity model Kendall Jenner.

Elsewhere, looks mixed mini-dresses and sportier outfits, including slouchy shorts, at a time when luxury casualwear is proving a hit for many brands.

Burberry’s creative chief Riccardo Tisci overhauls luxury brand’s logo ahead of his first collection

Tisci had already been generating a buzz in recent months by introducing a new sans-serif logo by British graphic designer Peter Saville, a “TB” monogram – worn by celebrities including Rihanna – and a collaboration with Vivienne Westwood, one of his British design heroines.

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Rihanna at JFK Airport, New York #TheBSeries #ThomasBurberryMonogram

A post shared by Burberry (@burberry) on Sep 13, 2018 at 11:36am PDT

The TB stands for company founder Thomas Burberry.

The changes have not gone unnoticed by investors, with Burberry’s shares up 38 per cent since his appointment was announced in March.

Yet analysts have said that Burberry is still at the early stages of its turnaround – like-for-like sales in its last quarter were up 3 per cent against double-digit growth for the sector – and the task facing CEO Gobbetti is not an easy one.

The immediate reaction to Tisci’s debut from fans at its Central London flagship store, however, was enthusiastic.

Some customers were already snapping up special edition items released to coincide with the show, including nylon trench coats and bomber jackets for £990 pounds (US$1,300).

Izzat Alhadjri, 27, on holiday from Malaysia and set to buy shoes and branded hoodies, said the collection was “refreshing”.

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The #ThomasBurberryMonogram takes over our flagship store in Milan, Italy

A post shared by Burberry (@burberry) on Sep 11, 2018 at 7:30am PDT

“It’s still the essence of Burberry, but it looks a bit edgier ... it was getting boring,” Alhadjri said.

“It’s respectful of the brand and of its colours – no one wants to see that changed.”

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