Trends To Watch: SS15
New shoes, blistered feet, sharp tailoring, Nyetimber fizz and Quintessentially Vodka cocktails… it can only mean one thing: London Collections: Men (LC:M).
The UK’s three day menswear extravaganza has been garnering more attention every season, and last week’s spring/summer 2015 showcase saw more well-turned-out gents attend the event’s runway shows and presentations than ever before.
In this comprehensive two-part report, we take a look at some of the key trends and collections from this season’s spectacle, offering an insight into what we’ll be filling our wardrobes with next summer.
One of the biggest themes running through LC:M SS15 was the influence of Latino cultures. With all eyes on Brazil at the moment, it seemed particularly apt that the rich culture of Latin America and the Hispanic Caribbean should have its design heritage tapped.
Hentsch Man’s ‘La Cantina’ collection, shown in Covent Garden’s Langley Street garage, drew inspiration from the nonchalance of South American summer evenings. Panama hats, reworked Cuban ‘Guayabera’ shirts and the colourful culture of the favelas were all key features of Brazilian-born designer Alexia Hentsch’s mix for SS15. Models smoked cheroots while drinking rum-infused beer, adding to the laid-back feel.
Bringing a dash of cowboy to the Latino theme, Katie Eary’s fun and energetic collection, entitled ‘Dallas Rodeo’, featured fringed Texan jackets and scarves, Mexican-inspired prints and cacti motifs, alongside tassel moccasin shoes.
Oliver Spencer’s spectacular show brought the excitement and energy of the Rio Carnival to LC:M. Accompanied by percussion band Rhythms Of The City, models took to the runway wearing suede buffalo jackets, artful loose-fit shirts and rhythmic wave print tops in a collection inspired by the Mexican architect Luis Barragán.
Elsewhere, A. Sauvage used a vintage Cuban-inspired postage stamp print in a tongue-in-cheek reference to the Banana Republic nations of the 1950s and 1960s.
Topman Design’s 1970s-inspired collection drew upon design influences from Mexico and Cuba, showing a directional fringed biker jacket and Cuban collar shirting, while Tiger of Sweden’s rock ‘n’ roll apparel incorporated Cuban-heeled Western boots, bringing a discreet Latino feel to the line:
Get The Look
- Asos Space Dye Shirt In Short Sleeve With Resort Slub
- Reiss Antonio Cuban Collar Shirt Blue
- Asos Suede Western Jacket
- River Island Red Zig Zag Print Crew Neck T-shirt
- Levis Vintage Clothing 1930s Suede Bomber Jacket
- Folk Slim-fit Short-sleeved Textured Cotton Shirt
- Reiss Alder Cuban Collar Shirt Navy
- Saint Laurent Curtis Tasselled Leather Jacket 205941
- Jean Shop Distressed Suede Jacket
- Lock & Co Hatters Straw Panama Hat
- Asos Panama Hat
- Jeffery West Chelsea Boots
Foliage of all kinds was a strong feature across many collections for LC:M SS15, with exotic leaves and blooms taking on bolder, more oversized forms than seen in previous seasons.
Topman Design applied bright daisy patterns to its jumpers, tops and shirting, with this statement motif carried through to trousers and home-spun knitted tanks. The use of yellow florals and the oversized nature of the blooms reinforced the collection’s 1970s psychedelic feel.
Also using daisies as floral inspiration was Hunter Gather. The brand’s relaxed-fit short-sleeved shirt was finished with a playful daisy and leaf pattern that brought an air of light-heartedness to the collection.
A. Sauvage’s artfully orchestrated line of tailoring and separates featured tropical robusta leaf prints, which gave the range an urban jungle feel – it was a fitting motif for a label that’s consistently inspired by exotic patterns and craft skills.
Hentsch Man’s oversized foliage print was used intelligently on shorts, trousers and bombers, with contrast base tones giving the pattern a statement edge.
British label Dunhill is renowned for its impeccable formal wear but for SS15 the brand introduced a more laid-back form of polish. Foliage patterned Aloha shirts and seaweed print swim shorts were standout features of the line and affirmed the collection’s ‘Escape’ theme.
Not botanicals as such, but Orlebar Brown’s Underwater collection tapped into the foliage of the ocean with its fern and coral prints, which, alongside photographic palm prints, were applied to their stylish swim shorts and resort wear shirting:
Inspired By Lookbook
Get The Look
- Penfield Tropics Shirt In Floral Print
- Universal Works Windcheater Jacket In Floral Print
- New Look T-shirt With Tropical Print
- New Look Bomber Jacket With Floral Print
- Son Of Wild Eden T-shirt In Floral Print
- He By Mango Slim-fit Printed Garment-dyed Chinos
- River Island Blue Tropical Bird Print T-shirt
- Ovadia & Sons Camp Hibiscus-printed Cotton Shirt
- River Island Black Floral Print Shorts
- Ami Floral-print Five Pocket Jeans 188300
- Hartford Mid-length Printed Swim Shorts
- Reiss Ditora Nature Print Swim Shorts Blue
A Kaleidoscope Of Green & Blue
From jade green and cornflower blue to aquamarine and khaki, greens and blues were dominant across collections, with many designers choosing to pair tonal shades of the same colour together.
Hunter Gather made excellent use of the shades, showing sky blue trousers, mid-blue bomber jackets and light green trousers.
Savile Row house Gieves & Hawkes was a considered advocate of powder blue tailoring, along with outerwear in varying shades of green. Standout pieces included an aquamarine parka, a sleek suede biker jacket in mid-blue and a teal double-breasted mac.
Likewise, Kent and Curwen’s preppy collection also made effective use of soft blue hues for its sleek leather outerwear, while Hardy Amies’ mint green palette was a spot-on choice for summer. Elsewhere, Duchamp and Turnbull & Asser flew the flag for sharp formal wear with their immaculate tailoring and separates in summer shades of blue.
British powerhouse Burberry used green to great effect in its collection, applying shades of olive, aqua and vintage green to its signature trenches, precision tailoring and elegant accessories, in an assemblage inspired by the writer Bruce Chatwin.
J.W.Anderson’s artful androgynous line featured tapestry-like tops, depicting scenes of English landscapes with green fields and Kent chalk cliffs, woven with an Edwardian arts and crafts feel. Green striped neck tie tops with a blouse-like quality were other key features of the collection.
Dunhill’s light olive trench and green sheen finish trousers were fine examples of this season’s appetite for green, while directional newcomer Maharishi and British favourites Hackett and Richard James also used shades of green to accent their collections.
Setting the pace of directional cordwaining, Nicholas Kirkwood’s disco shoes in cobalt blue really hit the mark for statement footwear:
Inspired By Lookbook
Get The Look
- Asos Slim Fit Blazer In 100% Wool
- Ymc Oxford Shirt In Slim Fit
- He By Mango Unstructured Cotton Blazer
- Incotex Glanshirt Slim-fit Cotton Oxford Shirt
- Band Of Outsiders Slim-fit Cotton-twill Chinos
- Topman Selected Homme Logan Trousers
- Polo Ralph Lauren Shirt In Slim Fit Poplin
- Asos Slim Fit Blazer In Oxford
- Topman Blue Skinny Suit Trousers
- Reiss William B Flecked Slim-fit Blazer Blue 245
- River Island Light Blue Slim Chinos
- He By Mango Washed Cotton Blazer
The theme of conflict, upheaval and battle was impossible to ignore at LC:M SS15, with many collections inspired by subcultures, rebellion and war.
KTZ’s collection featured Ancient Greek black figure pottery prints of classical battle scenes, with models clad in torso armour, Samurai vests and gladiatorial helmets, clutching shields as they took to the catwalk.
Christopher Raeburn’s collections always include strong military references and this season was no exception. The line featured graphic prints of futuristic bombs, fighter jets and assault helicopters across outerwear, casual tailoring and tees.
Maharishi’s ‘Viet-Afgan’ showcase drew upon the rich cultural heritage and military conflicts of Vietnam and Afghanistan, featuring reworked camouflage print outerwear mixed with traditional Middle Eastern geometric motifs.
Matthew Miller’s anti-war collection drew upon the emotional trauma of the post-conflict soldier, with clean-lined shirting and outerwear sewn with anti-war slogans while floral wreaths and corsages decorated the model’s necklines and wrists, in a respectful nod to the lost souls of wartime.
Elsewhere, A. Sauvage’s dynamic collection had a dark feel to it, with the label citing the punk, rude boy and mod subcultures as sources of inspiration:
Inspired By Lookbook
Get The Look
- Indigo & Maine Zip Raglan Sweatshirt In Black
- Allsaints Lycan Zip Hoody
- Asos Bomber With Perforated Texture
- Asos Skinny Chinos In Overdyed Camo
- Allsaints Wilde Sweat Pant
- Asos Slim Fit Smart Joggers In Jersey
- Saturdays Surf Nyc Bowery Flecked Loopback Cotton-blend Jersey Sweatshirt
- Reiss 1971 Virgil Leather Bomber Jacket Black
- Topman Black Chino Shorts
- Asos Sandals In Leather
- Jimmy Choo Barlowe Metal-studded Leather High Top Sneakers
- Asos Boots With Zip Opening
It would appear that London designers have finally tired of the check trend this season, with another classic pattern set to have its turn in the limelight. Coming in bold, thick and contrast forms, the pinstripe was the motif of choice throughout many collections.
Casely Hayford’s ‘Art Intervention’ line exhibited graphic pinstripe suiting and oversized coats in a modern reinterpretation of the city business mogul. Meanwhile, Gieves & Hawkes’ and Duchamp’s pinstripe linen-blend blazers took the timeless pattern out of the city and gave it a seasonally-appropriate Riviera feel.
Matthew Miller’s pinstripe jackets, coats, trousers and tanks seemed to hint at the de-mobbed soldier’s return to civilian life, with cut-and-sew pinstripe patches referencing the turmoil of a post-war mind.
Elsewhere, J.W.Anderson featured blouse-like striped shirts and silk trousers, while E. Tautz reinforced the stripe as the motif of the season with its broad-width striped trousers, coats, shorts and tops.
Tiger of Sweden also demonstrated the Scandi take on pinstripe with its dark streamlined suiting:
Inspired By Lookbook
Get The Look
- Topman Selected Homme Stripe Blazer
- Cheap Monday Shirt With Vertical Stripe
- Asos Slim Fit Suit Jacket In Fine Stripe
- Steven Alan Collegiate Stripe-print Shirt 192752
- Fred Perry Southsea Deck Chairs Striped Shirt
- Asos Striped Denim Shirt In Long Sleeve
- Hentsch Man Regular-fit Striped Cotton-canvas Shorts
- Our Legacy Striped Cotton Wool And Linen-blend Shorts
- Dolce & Gabbana Striped Linen-cotton Blend Trousers 190146
London has always been a hotbed of design creativity and as LC:M proves, it showcases the finest elements of the traditional and contemporary. From heritage tailoring to cutting-edge futurism, our fair capital is continuing to make a positive impact on the menswear industry.
In this key trends round-up, we’ve picked out some of the strongest themes seen at this season’s showcase to help you get ahead of the game and build your future summer wardrobe using current SS14 collections.
In part 2, we’ll be taking an in-depth look at some of our favourite brands and features of LC:M SS15.
So, what do you think – are you looking forward to next year’s trends? Will you be adding a couple of key pieces to your wardrobe in preparation?
Let us know in the comments section below…