LC:M Round-Up: Day 1 And 2

Expanding into four full days for the first time, London Collections: Men continues its quest to set global menswear trends in everything from sportswear to tailoring, as well as launching the careers of innovative young designers.

But with autumn/winter traditionally a more conservative season, what did the capital’s design talent produce?

Friday Highlights

Topman Design, who opened this year’s proceedings, continued to develop Gordon Richardson’s love of the 1970s but in a way that somehow felt more satisfying than AW14’s cowboy collection.

Inspired by a Technicolor collision of Bay City tartans and acid trip glam rock, it featured some truly statement coats with panels of faux fur that emphasised and reacted to movement, creating a combination of texture and fluidity rarely found in menswear:

Ede & Ravenscroft’s military-inspired collection focused on the style traits of an upper-class gentleman of Downton Abbey heritage. Velvet jackets and tweed greatcoats were a highlight, all cut in a traditional Savile Row style.

Aquascutum offered a more contemporary, rakish silhouette, punctuated with leather bombers and scarves that were pure 1930s cad (a very good thing, of course):

Barbour continued with their military references for AW15, using patch pockets and a variety of very appealing camo prints to create a cohesive, undeniably British feel to their collection:

The father of contemporary heritage brands, Nigel Cabourn took inspiration from the classic tales of British exploration for AW15 – Hillary’s ascent of Everest and Scott’s crossing of the Antarctic.

Cabourn’s clothing is fanatical in its detail, something that came through clearly in the presentation. His parkas, for example, have been technically made to withstand Arctic conditions. Should be fine on your winter commute then, we reckon:

However, the stand-out star of Friday was undoubtedly Coach. Under new direction from ex-Mulberry designer Stuart Vevers, the label’s take on American luxury was seductive.

Outerwear pieces embraced shearling (THE trend that has emerged so far) and soft calf leather, in a new take on classic Americana. Think less Marlboro man, more Brooklyn luxe:

Saturday Highlights

Saturday provided a showcase for some of the strongest talents that the city has to offer. Lou Dalton set an enormously high standard with her collection that explored many shades of black.

Avoiding Goth or 1980s Berlin, Dalton’s tones were a mixture of hard and soft, textured and smooth, tartans and plain, tailored and deconstructed – showing a romantic side to the austere feel monochrome is so often associated with.

Parallel slashes, zippered layers and oversized shapes highlighted Dalton’s mastery of tailoring, producing a great collection of wearable and desirable pieces:

Matthew Miller’s use of non-traditional fabrics for his ‘Resistant’ AW15 collection added some real texture to the minimal pieces. Star items included grained leather and ribbed wool burgundy biker jackets and deconstructed/reconstructed embroidered canvas trousers.

Embellished with little more than belts of tasselling, it was Miller’s bespoke fabrics that were left to get his design philosophy across:

Finally, fashion darlings Agi & Sam showed a collection that took its roots from their roots – specifically Agi’s childhood in Yorkshire. The resulting pieces elicited an almost emotional reaction, reworking Agi’s early ideas about clothing and laying bare construction and shape in a series of Stephen Biesty-esque ‘exploding’ jackets, which came in a mix of burgundy wools, patterns and primary colours.

Finished with block-coloured Lego face masks, this collection was a great combination of humour and style: