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#LCM AW14 – Day One Show Report

Rain… It came by the bucketful on Monday, ushering in the latest London Collections: Men. Whilst the fashion-set shook off their brollies, the opening breakfast commenced with an introduction to the week by GQ’s editor-in-chief, Dylan Jones. With barely a moment to dry off, it was straight to the first show and the three-day whirlwind of menswear shows, presentations, and parties! Here were our standout shows for Monday:


Lou Dalton: Her heritage is a constant theme in her collections, but this season saw her reference her history more so than ever. Taking ideas from the family farm she grew up on, the clothes were all made for the working man.  Made for living and labouring in; cords, bleached denim, and cashmere-wool blends all made for a sophisticated—at least from a farmhand’s point of view—look. Whilst the collection looked back to the past for inspiration, she was clear that this was not a merely a “historical re-creation,” but rather an interpretation of those quaint things she grew up around; A charming ode to the men of the land.


Topman Design: Inspired by the boys who worked in shipyard docks, surrounded by rusting chains and the threat of rain, the show started with a poem by John Cooper Clarke; his gruff Lancashire accent highlighting the mood to which the rest of the show would gesture towards. Industrial and maritime inspired looks were the central concepts, with PVC bonded wool coats and funnel neck knits—all to protect the boys from the stormy northern skies. Flashes of baby blue and searing red couldn’t be offset by the oppressive dark palette of smoky black and grey. It was just as well these boys had layered up, as the heavens opened onto the runway, showering them to the sound of ‘House on Fire’ by Outfit. But this wasn’t to be the most sobering moment: the show was in dedication to Bryan McMahon, Another Man’s senior fashion editor, who tragically passed away on New Year’s Eve.


Matthew Miller: A man never to mince his words, Miller took a political approach to AW14—once again. Hiring 10 different creatives from different backgrounds, he asked them to write a passage describing their dreams, realities, and issues with life. The excerpts were intended to highlight the insecurities that we inherently seem to feel. From this launching point, Miller created a collection rich in textures and layers. Androgyny and shaved heads gave the outfits a harsher sense, but despite being a collection heavy in emotion and political sentiment, it was all extremely wearable, and will no doubt be a hit with the buyers.


MAN: Three of the newest, brightest stars in London menswear all showed just how diverse our designers are. Alan Taylor kicked things off with a lesson in perception, referencing in particular the silhouette. Taking inspiration from David Byrne and the Talking Head’s film Stop Making Sense (1984), in addition to the “cut-outs” series by Henri Matisse, the construction of these pieces were intended to highlight how proportions could seem natural despite being oversized. Appliqué details and bold hints of metallic green and neon yellow all highlighted the details that make Taylor so renowned. Next up was Bobby Abley with his trademark bear, but this time his journey took him through the gloomy swamps and haunted hills to create a much darker, sinister mood. His cartoon-ish style has been given a ghoulish twist, with sporty tops emblazoned with the words “BRAINS,” “DREAM ON,” and “RIP.” Neoprene coats, furry shorts and oversized jackets always hit home the playful charm of Abley (offset beautifully by the menacing mouth-pieces that bared the models teeth in a grotesque manner).

Craig Green ended the show with something more lo-fi in presentation, rooted in obsession and romance. Green is well known know for his use of psychedelic colour and pattern, all created by hand and never with the interference of digital means. Using felt, recycled Alcantara, and roughly panelled knits, this was Green’s vision of masculinity through grand tradition; this was also Green’s final show with MAN, but we can safely assume that he will go on to become a regular at London Collections: Men.


Richard Nicoll: The master of colour, Nicoll this season showcased a focused and intelligent collection. No second guesses with AW14 as he showed his vision of opposites. Whilst they weren’t perhaps the most obvious of opposites, there certainly were distinctions between the looks; most obviously the jersey sweatshirts with “DISCREET” and “BRUTAL” printed on them and taken from Brian Eno’s album Discreet Music. Tailored outfits that were in gorgeous tones of blue, teal, and red, to oversized check shirts worn with bright green leather shorts; to the ruffled organza shirts in neon shades: Nicoll fully believed in this collection and it worked to great effect.

Joseph Turvey: One of the biggest success stories to come out of London Collections: Men this season was Joseph Turvey’s return: not only with his AW14 presentation but two collaborations; River Island and New Era. Turvey is well known for his illustrations and quirky prints, and this season didn’t disappoint. Looking back through his previous collections, he delivered a more refined version of his trademark. Sporty silhouettes in light pastel shades of peach, lilac, cream, and blue made for a light take than what winter fashion is usually about. Prints were floral-centric with lace-embroidered track pants and jackets, further adding a light whimsicalness to Turvey’s collection.

- Jazzino Tamani

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All images from Style.com, except Matthew Miller from catwalking.com

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