The menswear shows are a time in my fashion calendar I really do relish. Everyone is so much more relaxed, less anxious somehow. There is an effortlessness to the whole proceedings and much more patience from all who gather to experience it.
The usual frenzy to get backstage just doesn’t exist, meaning that going to give your appreciation to the creator of the spectacle you have just loved and experienced is more of a pleasure, rather than some bizarre scene from Mission Impossible to get backstage that we encounter at Womenswear. I often feel like I’m at a rugby match at some of those shows with the amount of jostling and shoving that is involved when it comes to pressing the flesh of the designer of the house. And I’ve sometimes had the bruises to prove it.
So, suffice to say, I LOVE MENSWEAR SHOWS. So much more civilised. The collections, too, are very subtle, very measured and all the more powerful for that, as small details are laboured over and demand up-close-and-personal appointments to appreciate them. All in all, an experience as different as night and day that I absolutely ADORE!
This season did really make me feel there was a real confidence and an ability for each brand to celebrate what they do best. Some shows took my breath away, like Rick Owens, where the boys stalked the roof top of the Palais de Tokyo on scaffolding rigs and descended to one of the most powerful soundtracks. Then there was the amazing rave show of Comme des Garçons Homme Plus, whose sequined offerings shone and sparkled under the red strobes and refracted light of disco balls.
Also, London had such strength and power – it really fed my imagination and was stuffed full of so much wonder and brilliance. Its shows outshone those from so many of the global brands who have far more means than these independent designers. They created magical, memorable moments that I will treasure for ever. A real moment of hope emerged for the strength and power of the British menswear industry. It truly celebrated their individualism and highlighted how we are forging the future of the British menswear industry. It affirmed that everyone should celebrate their difference and sing loud from their own hymn sheets with confidence, gusto and pure conviction and that, in turn, each designer would be celebrated by all in fashiondom!
Shows that made me feel pure euphoria were Charles Jeffrey, who is one of the many brilliant voices and whose future is so bright and brilliant I can barely contain my excitement for what it holds for him. Also, the brilliant man that is Craig Green, who we have celebrated in People To Meet, and who takes my breath away every time with his pure originality. He challenges himself every time.
Of course, these are only two of the many brilliant bright lights. Hopefully we have found a way in these pages to share that with you, my dear Tenners. I really look forward to knowing if we have managed to give you a glimpse of all the wonder and all my love for my menswear fashion moments.