London Fashion Week Men’s took place over the weekend. With the Spring/Summer collection being showcased from Friday (8 June) till Monday (11 June).
The 12th edition of the London Fashion Week Men’s opened with a show from ICEBERG. The Italian label’s young British Creative Director James Long brought the label for the first time to London and it was the first show of the fashion week as well. The weekend showcased many award-winning designers’ creations. Charles Jeffery LOVERBOY, who showed his SS’19 collection on the last day was the winner of the British Emerging Talent Menswear Award at the Fashion Awards 2017, along with COTTWEILER and A-COLD-WALL* both nominees of British Emerging Talent Menswear.
Sought After Shows
Coming to the shows, A-COLD-WALL*’s Samuel Ross presented a work of art as much as a fashion show. The label opened its SS’19 collection with a crew that resembled Mad Max’s War Boys, smothered in cement and the brand’s signature detachable hoods. The collection also saw Ross present a new way of working with synthetic materials, off-filter proportions riffed on the boring side of the utilitarian look with minimal classics like grey trousers and sand-coloured suits offset by PVC shirting, industrious accessories and metallic accents.
Xander Zhou presented the collection on Sunday morning. A designer that’s at the forefront of Chinese talent, Xander Zhou’s exploration of the supernatural and sci-fantasy returned for spring summer 2019. Exploring the line between human and alien, the sci-fi influence was clear, with hospital scrubs decorated with extra-terrestrial prints, to angular finishes, boxy shirts, yellow tinted sunglasses and Nike’s React Element 87 shoes. From unnaturally blue contact lenses to fibre optic makeup and a look that came equipped with a spiral of six arms, it was the prosthetics, designed with makeup artist Isamaya Ffrench, that cemented the Zhou’s sci-fi narrative.
For spring summer 2019 Liam Hodges presented a collection titled “Slick Trash” which came packed with dystopian and coming of age themes. Edward Crutchley delivered a co-ed collection that stepped away from the conceptual in favour of something that felt real and wearable. And Qasimi’s urban nomad continued to explore merging cultures with his travels taking him to the Mediterranean shores of Northern Africa, with a rich heritage of crafts, textiles and colour.
Sustainable Designers at LFWM
Christopher Raeburn: The stand-out British menswear label practicing sustainability is Christopher Raeburn. Raeburn recycles and repurposes fabrics and garments and each season surprises both the industry and his customers with his vision to rework and remake these into distinctive and functional pieces.
Bethany Williams: Bethany Williams is taking the sustainability story a step further with her ‘Breadline’ range. Fully traceable for make and fabric, the 100 percent sustainable collection is developed in conjunction with the Vauxhall Food Bank and Tesco, with 30 percent of profits from the collection going to charity. Williams believes social and environmental issues go hand in hand and through exploring the connection between these issues we may find innovative design solutions to sustainability.
Oliver Spencer: Producing predominantly in Portugal and the UK, Oliver Spencer is a formidably sized brand that observes the conduct and transparency of its supply chain, however complex that is for a brand of this size. Interestingly, the company is removing folding paper from its garments packaging from autumn winter 2018. According to its website, this small refinement has the potential environmental savings of 36,934kg of carbon per year.
Some Facts about the Men’s Fashion Week (London)
LFWM featured over 50 designer businesses and welcomed guests from over 45 countries including China, South Korea, Spain, Germany, France, US and Australia.
Since its inception in June 2012, over 430 designer brands have shown their collections at over 750 catwalk shows, presentations, performances and events during LFWM.
The men’s clothing market grew by an estimated 3.5% in 2017, reaching a massive £15 billion. (Mintel 2018)
Menswear now accounts for 26% of the total clothing market, with menswear sales continuing to outperform womenswear. (Mintel 2018)
Menswear is predicted to grow by 11% between 2018 and 2022 to reach £17.1 billion.