21 June 2017

SS18 Favourites: London

Spring/Summer 2018

Spring/Summer 2018

I thought it would be quite fun to get my gut reactions down to the menswear shows this month - starting right here in London.

My two favourite collections were by Kiko Kostadinov and Matthew Miller. I know a lot of people are raving about Craig Green this season, but while I think that it was beautifully composed, it just did not resonate with me. I find myself hugely informed by emotional reactions, although I can usually reconcile that with a broader appreciation of craft and skill once I am able to see and try pieces on in person. Ultimately when it comes to menswear I cannot help but frame my perspective through the lens of what I would personally like to wear or, even, could imagine myself enjoying were my wardrobe different. These two shows managed to tap into where I find myself lately, with the macabre duality and surgical functionality of Kostadinov's collection, and the stylised rebellion of Miller's. I think that a personal connection is always important for me, and where I think that I enjoy fashion the most, because then it tends to feel like you are almost having some manner of dialogue or understanding with that designer. I suppose like any art form it is about how you happen to experience that work, and so for me, these two were collections that I really enjoyed.

With Kostadinov's collection I find myself drawn to the night-time uniforms, with his takes on boiler suits, and even the neon pieces, more than the day-time tailoring, although the double-breasted black jacket I have posted looks incredible. His collection, "Funny How Secrets Travel", was inspired by the idea of evil acts and excessive violence having become forms of entertainment, with the most obvious reference in styling being to that of Manhunter's Francis Dolarhyde (1986). I enjoyed the idea of his character taking on a more functional approach to his uniform as night descended and he partook in whatever ultra-violent fodder for our movie screens and Twitter feeds. This collection also apparently marks the first time a designer has collaborated with Asics for an all new shoe (as opposed to simply creating a new colourway), with his GEL-ASKR 1 model, that I am really excited to get my hands on...in black, because I am not quite ready for any neon in my wardrobe yet.

Miller's collection was for me in parts a small reminder of what Helmut Lang could be if they had a stronger design team. It is actually a topic I am hoping to delve into further with the next podcast episode, which will be coming out soon hopefully. Finding the original Helmut bulletproof-style vest in my size for a decent price these days is rather tricky, so I might be tempted to try out one of Miller's pieces and see how that goes. Anyhow I enjoyed that more practical side to the collection once again with the multi-pocket vests and jackets, and the sling detailing. I tend to carry quite a lot with me, so it is always nice to have a practical layout of pockets, although I have recently bought myself a bum bag (I think Americans call them a fanny pack?) to wear across my body. I do think that the collection was missing a sense of rawness that would have helped take it to the next level, but even so it was styled well and overall a strong collection. I may not personally go for that sleeker tailoring, but it worked well and I think that the womenswear offerings really helped to round out the collection. Personally I would be interested to see where he could have taken this collection given another few months, but all the same, some really solid pieces.

What were your favourite shows from London?


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