River Island AW14 Exclusive

New images exclusive to FashionBeans show River Island’s attempt to reposition itself on the high street. The chain is hoping to tap into the high-end market with its latest collection, which features more technical and luxe pieces.

Styled by Wonderland Magazine‘s Fashion Director, Andrew Davis, and shot by photographer Nick Haddow, the release of the AW14 mainline lookbook will mark a new direction for the brand.

Davis, who has previously worked for the likes of Vogue, W and Harper’s Bazaar, was joined on set by models Sebastian Sauve, Jeremy Boateng and Charlie France.

FashionBeans had exclusive access backstage at the recent shoot, which took place at Park Royal Studios in North West London.

River Island’s menswear controller, Andy Grant, said the starting point for the collection was fabric.

“The design team spent an incredible amount of time sourcing the right cloth and I think it really show within the collection. We worked a lot on the silhouettes to create modern but accessible shapes, which really complemented the fabrics.”

Grant, who has been with the firm for 13-years, added that layering and texture also play an important role.

“From brushed finishes to plush furs and from textured nylons to tactile faux sheepskin, the fabric consideration is key within every piece.”

Tartans, checks and Prince of Wales all make an appearance, mixed with neoprene, synthetics, leather and shearling.

Looks include elongated and oversized tops teamed with skinny jeans and trousers, as well as long-line outerwear. A David Bowie-inspired wool mix overcoat draws on the ultra-minimal looks of the late 1980s. Tailoring is kept slim, with a heavy presence of double-breasted cuts.

River Island has confirmed the final lookbook images will be available in May, one month before the retailer’s collaboration with British/Dutch label Baartmans and Siegel is revealed.

The AW14 collection will arrive in stores and online at RiverIsland.com from August for transitional items, including t-shirts and shirts, with the full outerwear following in October.

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River Island AW14 Lookbook: Behind The Scenes