LONDON COLLECTIONS: MEN PT 2

by William Buckley

With the dust settled from a whirlwind schedule in London, followed by Pitti and production of our February print issue, I’m finally able to edit the rest of the photos I took at London Collections: Men.

Outerwear game was strong this season for Coach 1941. The brand, known predominantly for their leather goods, bags and accessories, showcased their latest collection in London’s Lindley Hall, transformed into an industrial space with rusted walls and iron beams. The collection featured all sorts of excellent outerwear, from big yellow expedition coats, to fur and shearling, perfecto-style leather jackets, and to top it all off, the bucket hat, still something of a hard sell, but perhaps this will thrust it back into fashion.

Dunhill was perhaps the best-executed presentation of the season. In a grand house with renaissance murals on walls and ceilings and gold gilt glinting everywhere, models stood in various aristocratic-type social scenes across the various rooms. One in the library with a collegiate cast, dressed like old boys of Oxford, another around a grand piano presenting evening wear replete with tuxedos and velvet tuxedo jackets, and one a little more relaxed with a bulldog dozing by a wood-burning fire and sport coats and sweaters in no short supply.

Thoughtfully offering the fashion crowd Bloody Mary’s on entry, the Belstaff presentation was impressive. Huge rocks and snow transformed the East London industrial space into the Arctic, and the collection’s inspiration, summed up by the hashtag #headingnorth, was perfectly realized in fur-trimmed parkas and huge shearling coats. Leather moto pants and jackets were presented with motorbike props, which brought back to mind the company’s modest beginnings as a motorcycle jacket brand.

By appointment to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, Turnbull & Asser have been dressing the gentry for over a hundred years. The FW16 collection was rooted in traditional British tailoring, but with geometric prints and a bold use of color synonymous with the brand.

The typically rebellious in-your-face outfits you’d expect from Jeremy Scott this season at Moschino, but perhaps more saleable than the Versaille-inspired collection in SS16. The inspiration for FW16 was largely drawn from London visual artists Gilbert & George, with heavily saturated colors and trompe-l’œil prints on many of the garments that lent the collection that irreverently cartoonish aspect that we’ve come to expect.

Central Saint Martins alum Edward Crutchley is on the ascent. With experience working for Kim Jones at Louis Vuitton, who hosted the presentation with The Sunday Times Style, Crutchley launched his eponymous collection last year at Lulu Kennedy’s Fashion East initiative, and this collection marks a strong evolution of his aesthetic. A darker exploration of his tailored/streetwear hybrid, for Crutchley, the collection’s strongest influence was the countryside of his native Yorkshire, and that agrarian culture, though there was something of the South American about the fabrics draped over the shoulders of models like capes, and hats like Spanish bandoleros.

With the locations this season spread across London like Marmite, and typical British punctuality meaning each show would start on time (unheard of in New York, where everything starts precisely 30 minutes late), the Herculean feat of attending everything was just that. With a 45 minute window to get to and from the evening’s Duchamp presentation in time to catch the Moschino show, and no sustenance save a cup of horrid instant coffee that morning, I rushed into Pret, grabbed a Ham and Pret Pickle sandwich that I scoffed on the street as I hot-stepped towards the Rosewood Hotel. And it was worth the mad scramble: a upscale collection of tailored clothing, with injections of patterns and bright colors.