The mens shows got off to a good start, with a really strong season from the new major players of London fashion – standouts included variations on a theme, androgynous menswear and experimental cuts from JW Anderson, pleasing prints from LCM babies Agi & Sam and heavy sports influences from Christopher Shannon. Paris really stuck with the enduring prints theme, Frankie Morello went for burger and sushi prints, Moschino showed lightning bolts amidst jewel-toned stripes and nerdy jacket and cardigan combinations, Paris brought the expected level of cool minimalism, Marni and Tillman Lauterbach were particular favourites.
Milan was…Milan…Dsquared2 was the usual display of maximum homoeroticism and minimal actual clothing, Etro took Mexican inspiration to rather a literal level, sending a heavily moustasched model down the catwalk in a whacking great sombrero. Probs not one we’re going to see on many street style blogs, but always a good go-to for fancy dress parties.
Overall, SS14 is looking good for menswear, lots of minimalism, androgyny, ~WaCkY pRiNtS~, with some added louche looks from Haider Ackermann’s quilted smoking jackets in a luxe pallette of wines and navys to Dries Van Noten’s muted tonal florals.
Surprising highlight collections for me were Iceberg and Opening Ceremony, both really clean and sharp, centered in the focus colours for next season – navys, blacks and creams/whites. I wasn’t sold on Givenchy’s prints this season, though for me the religious iconography was a real winner so it would’ve been hard to top anyway. I was surprised to like Louis Vuitton, usually not a collection I pay much notice to, but I really liked the Talented Mr Ripley vibes.
Obvs, there were some absolute car crashes. No surprises for guessing who I’m coming for here. Hedi Slimane continues his one-man destruction of Yves Saint Laurent, sorry, Soft Grunge Laurent, sorry, Saint Laurent Paris, every season managing to churn out more and more overly commercial, cheap sartorial high fives to dated pop culture references. This season the vibe is ‘Glam Rock by George at Asda’. (oh and obviously the standard set of models who wouldn’t look out of place in an in-patient facility. Good work, you absolute tit)
Moving on from blood-pressure raising train wrecks, here’s a look at recurrent themes for SS14.
ANDROGYNOUS / LADY PARTS
BLUE IS THE COLOUR
ALL WHITE EVERYTHING
“FLORALS FOR SPRING? GROUNDBREAKING”
KHAKIS/ NUDES/BEIGE/WHALE TUSK/OLD BISCUIT
If I was writing about The Central Saint Martin’s MA AW13 shows in the style of a professional know-about-these things person, I would say it was a vibrant, engaging and theatrical display, showcasing the expert tailoring and technical skills honed at London’s most prestigious fashion school. But what I really mean is, it was tits-mental and I loved it.
CSM’s AW13 reminded us yet again why London is one of the style innovators of the world with such a diverse collection that included the best of minimalism, maximalism, monochrome, Quality Street colours and everything in between.
Elena Crehan, having a Sibling/Meadham x Rocky Horror menswear moment. Really good legs, too. Bastards.
The collection that spoke most to my cold dead heart was from Hampus Berggren, who on top of having an amazing name, also brought my favourite thing in the world, ALL BLACK EVERYTHING. I love menswear, in general I find it so much more interesting to see menswear done really well than womenswear, I just feel there is so much further menswear can go, and whereas womenswear trends will get adopted en masse however ridiculous (heel-less shoes, anyone?), whenever I see anyone on the street wearing this kind of silhouette, it literally makes my heart LEAP. And also, anyone who can do sheer without it smacking of over-the-hill rent boy always deserves a special mention.
Patrick Bateman wipe-clean chic from Hwan Sun Park. So fresh and so clean, clean.
Following on from pre-fall’s obsession with pleats and ruffles, Jaimee McKenna‘s collection was crisp and neat in such a pleasing range of blues, including colour of the moment, cobalt.
Apart from bringing the medical support sock back onto the runway, Jessica Fawcett‘s mix of textures and materials was definitely noteworthy. Again with the pleats, the lightness of this look despite the domineering silhouette is pretty damn dreamy. Also, I’m always a fan of a ~sexy~ mesh insert.
Monochrome monk is another of my favourite kinds of look, and one I shall be replicating often in my dotage. Maggie Rydland‘s minimal collection
One of my absolute favourites, Sadie Williams is such a perfect example of how to do mixed textures without compromising a simple silhouette. I absolutely love the clean lines and shape to her dresses, and the mix of strategically placed leather on such shiny, brightly coloured fabric, on paper sounds like some kind of New Look nightmare, but William’s whole collection was luxe without being excessive.
Hello…is it one of those weird surgical balloons they use to rebuild people’s faces you’re looking for? Well if that’s your thing get your wallet out because yet again Toma Stenko gave us warped, unnatural silhouettes in browns and blues. The whole collection actually reminds me of when you mix acrylic paint and it dries in lumpy swirls of colour. One thing I love about the CSM MA show, which Stenko is such a good example of, is it beings so good to see someone doing exactly what they want to do rather than variations on a commercial theme.
The winner of this year’s L’Oreal Bursary Award was Eilish Macintosh. From minimal monochrome column dresses with white rope harnesses to beige and black PVC/leather attached by what looked like phone cord, so interesting from a technical perspective as well as a purely visual one.
The second part of my favourite shows from London Collections: Men.
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