Sporting-clubbing cool rules at London Fashion Week Men
“Whatever one’s opinion of the election result, one thing the election result really said was that young people’s votes really matter again. Which can only be a good thing,” opined Caroline Rush, the CEO of the British Fashion Council, which controls LFWM.
With the overall mood oddly optimistic – half the shows featured shorts - like Oliver Spencer’s snazzy versions in plaid seersucker. These should be worn with his snug cardigan jackets, finished with no lapels in Pierre Cardin style. Summing up the mood in London, the entire cast wore white T-Shirts in the finale with the words Love Town.
For a funkier street look, then try Liam Hodges, who used aged tie-dyed effects with considerable skill on drawstring cotton boxing shorts. Though like a lot of designers here he paired the shorts with parkas; cut in military khaki.
The influence of UK rock stars on fashion was apparent throughout the season. Last week Liam Gallagher of Oasis wore an orange parka performing in last week’s memorial concert for the victims of the Manchester Attacks. This season parkas were all over the runway.
And no wardrobe in England is complete without a trench – given the amount of a rain that falls in this country. For next spring, a mack with interior straps that can be worn as a cape with be de rigueur. Call it a Capetintosh.
The best came from Matthew Miller, whose show inside St Sepulchre’s Church in Holborn featured a collaboration with Hancock, two layers of natural clothes bonded together with a layer of rubber, all manufactured in an original Victoria Mill.
Not every man will wear them with black lipstick as the boys did in the Miller show, but this look will be copied worldwide. Though Miller’s craziest ideas were the satin bomber jackets covered in massive pouches. By the way, Miller called his collection “Degeneration.”
Hundreds made the trek across the city to East London to see Cottweiler, which staged a great urban nomad collection in a giant factory off Brick Lane decorated with three mobile homes. Starring the accessory of the season; a mini backpack that on closer inspection turned out to be a folded up nylon parka.
For a chicer take on summer sportswear, Hussein Chalayan presented wonderful white cotton shirts dissected with straps; paired with light cotton striped pants rolled up to show lots of ankle.
Continuing the sporty mood, Italian shoe label Hogan teamed up with Aston Martin to launch a sleek, ergonomic driving shoe with the H logo at a natty slant on the high-tech mesh driving shoes. Fashion folks packed out the launch in Aston Martin’s accessories store on Dover Street, London’s hottest shopping Mecca.
“We like to work with best and it’s hard not to love Aston Martin. James Bond knew what to drive,” smiled Hogan CEO Andrea della Valle.
Many major roads like Regent Street – pedestrianized each weekend this summer - had huge banners reading: “London Welcomes Everyone.” While around the corner, hundreds packed into the brand new Rag & Bone boutique, at a party hosted by Jefferson Hack.
Buyers were not particularly present in London this past weekend, but the industry justly celebrated its 5th anniversary with a gala dinner inside The Ned, hosted by Tom Ford and GQ Editor in Chief Dylan Jones. The Ned is a giant new hotel created by Soho House founder Nick Jones inside the former headquarters of the Midland Bank, by legendary architect Edwin Lutyens, in The City. The hotel’s rooftop pool offers magnificent views over the new urban landscape, dotted with massive skyscrapers. The Shard; One Blackfriars known as The Vase and 20 Fenchurch nicknamed The Walkie Talkie - testament to how much money flows into London’s financial center, and another reason for all the optimism in London.
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