Split over three days across three key hubs in central London, in addition to a smattering of other locations, London Collections: Men (LC:M) showcases the breadth of British fashion talent, from the world's most innovative emerging designers to global menswear brands and Savile Row tailors.
The first day of LC:M started in truly British fashion, with everyone talking about the non-stop rain in the storm-battered city. Weather notwithstanding, here are some of the highlights from day one:
On the heels of his win at the 2012 British Fashion Awards (for Menswear Emerging Talent), Saunders presented in a dark and somewhat eerie floor of the former postal building known as the Old Sorting Office. We saw the bold use of color and pattern we've come to expect from the designer in pieces like bomber jackets lined with bright checks and tees with vibrant glitter stripes.
Gieves & Hawkes
Christie's sale house was a fitting location to showcase one of Savile Row's revered tailors. Strict silhouettes in olive, khaki, racing green, and grey, blue, and navy tones were reminiscent of the brand's military background, though there was quite a bit of peacocking amidst the masculine showing, like the debonair fur-lined and shawl-collar eveningwear looks.
Pink's first foray at LC:M was bursting with energy and color. At the presentation at the Institute of Contemporary Art, creative director Florence Torrens was keen to emphasize that "for a menswear brand called Pink, we are not in the business of taking ourselves too seriously."
With bright, candy-colored bursts of blue, yellow, and red in the shirts and cardigans, as well as a sharp three-piece Prince of Wales check and a double-breasted check suit, the brand demonstrated that they can do more than just make a good shirt and tie. (Watch a video of the rollicking presentation.)
Inspired by family photo albums from the John Smedley archives, "The Journey" AW14 collection demonstrated the brand's ability to produce classic knitwear with a twist. Bold colors and geometric patterns were prominent throughout, with standout pieces like indulgent loungewear, a grey, 100 percent cashmere tracksuit, and slim-fitting striped polo shirts.
From left: designs from Craig Green, Alan Taylor, Bobby Abley.
This joint initiative between Topman and Fashion East provides the perfect platform to showcase some of the most exciting young menswear designers. This year's line-up included Craig Green, Bobby Abley, and Alan Taylor.
Inspired by obsession and romance, Green emphasized how he "played with the overworked theme with overly functional clothing that included too many straps" when putting together his collection. Standout pieces include "intricately hand-painted" and faded prints in autumnal colors, which gives the pieces what Green describes as "a tapestry-esque feel."
Taylor continues his exploration of proportion, showing tailored garments that are in stark contrast to his previous collections of "ludicrously oversized clothing with large pockets."
Abley's "Phantom Manor" collection (which we'd like to re-title "WTF?") reinforces his desire to work with prints and cartoonish shapes, turning Mickey Mouse ears into devilish horns. He completed the sinister look by giving his models silver retainers and 'Dream On' knuckle-dusters we hope don't hit the streets any time soon.