Monday 6th January

| BY Dino Bonacic

Martine Rose: Menswear AW20

“Primary schools are magical. Everyone has been to one, but not often do you get a chance to come back,” said Martine Rose backstage after her AW20 show. And by backstage, I mean the outdoors playground of Torriano Primary School in Kentish Town, where the designer’s 4-year-old daughter goes. A “logistical nightmare,” of a location due to the set-up of the space was totally worth it – the experience of sitting in the halls haunted only by the kind of problems children are faced with allowed us to experience our old personal memories a bit differently. At Martine Rose, going back to school doesn’t really look like you might think.

Rococo-esque, laser-etched denim, sparkly lurex, rave-themed t-shirts and leather. A LOT of leather. Utility pocket vests, trousers, jackets and some seriously covetable thigh-high cowboy boots – all in the neutral shades of buttery-soft cowhide. The latest addition to Rose’s textile portfolio was black latex, which came in jackets, dresses, skirts and trousers. “It’s good to get a little sex in,” she said post-show. I couldn’t agree more.

In the show notes, the designer announced a look back at her past collections, a “giving the people what they want,” kind of moment. But on the catwalk, this move didn’t come across as a throwback. Instead of just recreating the past, Martine Rose revisited elements in a totally fresh way. Her wide-legged trouser silhouettes and sporty sweatshirts looked fresh and further refined, especially when matched with some new staples like the frilly shirting and oversized tailoring. In the words of Martine Rose herself, it was all “in-fucking-tense,” not giving you a chance to breathe from the speed and fierceness the models walked out with. “Martine Rose: Expect Perfection,” one standout red lurex jumper read, inspired by Durex’s own tagline. And we all do expect perfection from Rose. Luckily, she’s not let us down just yet.

Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans.