As you may already know, we had top mens fashion blog Style Salvage at the mens day of London Fashion Week checking out the goings on backstage, tweeting and of course paying close attention to the catwalk. Style Salvage have put together a summary for each of the NEWGEN MEN and MAN designers and what their collection is all about. Check ouy what they had to say below :
Andy Warhol's 1978 artwork 'Oxidisation' was the starting point for inspiration and from there the natural world took over. Techniques used to translate his starting point included bleaching, hand tie-dye and foiling. Leather had the appearance of being tarnished by the rain, whilst waxed cottons and and foiled drills seem to have corroded and the dye oxidised. The deceptively striking colour palette of black, metallic green, sun bleached peach and the 'polarvision style' washed out colours of oxidised metal and rust also played out in the accessories including leather lanyards, man clutches, satchels and weekender bags. It featured some of his most wearable and commercially desirable pieces to date. Fabrics with both a matt and sheen appearance are combined with foil to reflect light and to create layers of texture. The sunglasses which saw the designer collaborate with Fabris Lane for the second time were really one of my show highlights. The classic aviator style has been reworked to include protective leather on the arms in military greens and metallic leather which was teamed up with graduated two tone lenses. Through his invocation of natural destruction and the macabre, James Long's collection was a much welcome re-interpretation of camouflage and of war itself - pushing menswear in a new direction.
Carolyn Massey has always been a Style Salvage favourite and it has been great to see her develop her label over the last few seasons to become one of the most significant menswear designers in the UK. A details obsessive, Carolyn is known for her quintessentially elegant English cuts and details as her work concentrates on what it takes to be a gentleman. Here, inspired by the film 'Heroes of Telemark' a film about heavy water sabotage in WW2 starring a rather tanned Kirk Douglas and a recent visit to one of Kent's fishing villages Dungeness, her gentleman explores the great outdoors. Lightweight trenches and bombers in technical fabrics with drawstring waists and utilitarian pocketing, pushed both fisherman and military wear in a modern direction. Accessories were granted greater prominence than in previous seasons. Massey has branched out in to a small bag collection, belts, key rings and troddles (traditionally used by the German army) and was inspired by the craft of Kumihimo, to create cotton ropes and braids.There were bondage-style back braces which were created in collaboration with Hannah Martin and came in chrome, black leather and yellow with woven red and blue straps. Mirrored steam punk goggles fit for warfare crowned a collection which successfully looked towards the future whilst referencing the past. The show standout waxed jacket, complete with detachable rucksack rocketed to the top of my Christmas list. The pieces came together to offer protection and function whatever the weather whilst colour, including mustard yellow and rich blues, was splashed throughout to create a collection to truly covet.
Following on from her literary homages of Animal Farm last season, Katie Eary evoked further seminal works of literature through a collection entitled 'Naked Lunch'. Inspired by William Burroughs's Naked Lunch and Junky, the collection had an anatomical emphasis on the human body and delved deep into the destructive relationship of the mind, body and soul altering substances within these literary works. Ligament frayed denim, heart and eye prints and sheer stretch were among the discordant paranoia amongst the grandiose perfection and wonderfully strange collection. Fabrics included human hair, organza, velvet ribbon, pigskin, crocodile, snakeskin, fur, studs, rivets and chains. The highlights were the studded leather jackets in soft, bruised leather with blood red rope shoulder pieces and a studded multicolour cape. The gold bone and pearl rib cages, skeletal hands and laser cut brass sandals were a collaboration with Mawi and were darkly beautiful. Eary's attention to very macabre detail is unparalleled, even the Linda Farrow frames were covered in gold pigskin.
Obsessive research projects on basketball uniforms, 1970s New York street culture and tribal warriors resounded in slim, clearly defined proportions with strong lines cut at set lengths which all combined to draw attention to the athletic physique. There were intriguing feminine elements strewn throughout the collection with long almost dress like tops, shorts and jackets in luxurious double woven silk which evolved in to fold down bags. Trousers came in the form of technical leggings, sleek, narrow slacks, and loose, ethnic pants. JW Anderson is a designer who plays with elements of womenswear to almost interrogate masculinity, pushing at what is acceptable and to blur the boundaries between genders. His skill with accessories were evident with his jewellery which was based directly on Maaasai war decorations. With cuffs, chest plates and tribal, glossy beaded skirts, the the tough, warrior influence with the indulgence of painstaking hand beading was clear for all to see. For his second season under the MAN umbrella, JW has continued with his process of scooping up symbols of masculinity from around the world and reinterpreting them as contemporary, progressive menswear and accessories.
Entitled ‘Block out the Noise’ Christopher Shannon’s collection saw the unveiling of his collaborations with Eastpak and Reebok. The oversized backpacks in patent blues and white were paired with bum-bags (a somewhat surprising theme on a number of catwalk this week). The sportswear themes continued into the collection. Hooded bibs, with poppers and drawstrings were worn over simpler shirts and t-shirts. The limited colour palette- white, bright mint green, grey and navy and looked fresh and sporty and will certainly please Shannon’s audience.
For SS10 Topman Design presented a darkly minimal collection. Sharp and futuristic tailoring was fused with technical sportswear to maintain a smart and super slim silhouette. The colour palette was predominantly dark but there were flashes of cobalt blue and acid reds and the result was an almost industrial collection.
Sleekly tailored suit jackets, both single and double breasted with rolled up sleeves were given an edge when paired with slim trousers, cropped at the ankle. There were references to more industrial elements- soft, black and white prints recalled urban scenes, and colourful triangular prints- which added a softness to the tailoring and stopped the look from becoming too harsh. The collection was finished with a variety of sportswear accessories including bum bags, nylon bags and studded belts.
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