Neil Barrett: Menswear AW19
In his new concrete and beautifully austere headquarters in Milan, the British designer Neil Barrett presented his autumn collection on a black catwalk dotted with giant LED screens. On these, played turned-up footage of London at night. This abstract mix of neon commercial signage served as a digital reflection of his fascination with the city’s numerous style-tribes, past and present. Set to a bass-thumping and repetitive track, Barrett skilfully fused ‘70s street uniform for a “modern punk”. Those fluoro street signs were digitally printed onto a belted trench, tops and trousers, too. And another belted trench came in see-through plastic and could have hung on the rails of Westwood and McLaren’s ‘70s punk-shop-hangout Sex. There were flared and cropped trousers, too, with turn-ups and long-line matching jackets, which spoke to the same-era football kop.
He looked to the capital’s unparalleled tailoring hubs of Jermyn Street and Saville Row with a beautiful checked wool coat and jackets, which he mixed with above. The punk pieces and tailoring later coalesced when black tiger stripes were printed onto beautifully-cut checked wool trousers. This new punk narrative played with and then blended the spirits and anarchic dress codes of the scene. Said Barrett of the successful fusion: “High mixes with low, the traditional with the rebellious.” This clever and on-the-pulse autumn line-out is the uniform for now. One which references and then distills the wardrobe of a modern punk seen on the streets of Shoreditch or Dalston. Is Barrett’s new punk the grandson of the original Kings Road Seditionaries?
Photographs by Jason Llloyd-Evans.