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# MARCH 2016
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COVER: Photo by MINDY BYRD
Y O U R EDITORIAL
Fashion magazines? Weâ€™ve got a million free ones. Issuu.com
As you easily see it’s still Fashion Week time. Last month we had BERLIN FASHION WEEK, this month it’s LONDON FASHION WEEK which is part of the March issue.
For the second season, LONDON FASHION WEEK was held at the Brewer Street Car Park, in Soho. The Car Park’s third floor hosted the show space, as well as the highly visited DESIGNER SHOWROOMS, where over 150 designers exhibited their new collections to buyers and UK and international press. In Somerset House FASHION UTOPIAS presented designers from twenty four countries. SUPERIOR MAGAZINE met some of them. Read the interviews with designers from Austria, Lebanon, Nigeria and the Philippines. Find also in this issue the events by MULBERRY, BELSTAFF and CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS.
Our fashion editorials come this time from LINDSAY HILLENBRAND, SASHA SAMSONOVA and MINDY BYRD, from which we took the cover. Additionally we generally show you the winner of the voting for your favourite online presented editorial. In March you find number one and two since the editorials by winner RAISOULL SATYAM RAI and the follower MICHAEL GERMOSÉN were so close together and far ahead of the others. Enjoy our SUPERIOR MAGAZINE March 2016 issue … best Tom & Marc and the whole SUPERIOR MAGAZINE team
FASHION & STYLE
» LOST IN THE PARADISE«
34 LONDON FASHION WEEK A/W 16
» THE WAVE«
» COLOUR PALETTE«
Raisoull Satyam Rai
» AGE ISSUE«
LOST IN THE PARADISE photography by SASHA SAMSONOVA hair & make up by BRIE HORSHAW model OLGA LY
body LA PERLA
dress GUCCI shoes PRADA
body LA PERLA
body LA PERLA
lingerie LA PERLA
body LA PERLA
lingerie AGENT PROVOCATEUR
lingerie AGENT PROVOCATEUR sunglasses TOM FORD
photography by MINDY BYRD art direction by AMY OSBURN hair & make-up by SAIDA STAUDENMAIER styling by MIMI LE model ENJOLI @ NEXT MANAGEMENT -34-
white button up shirt RALPH LAUREN cape VINTAGE
white cut out top COS wide leg pants HAIDER ACKERMANN
white button up shirt RALPH LAUREN
peplum jacket HAIDER ACKERMANN pants COS
sweater MAJE -40-
sweater MAJE paper bag waist pants COS
peplum jacket HAIDER ACKERMANN pants COS
white button up shirt RALPH LAUREN cape VINTAGE
FASHION UTOPIAS AUSTRIA LEBANON NIGERIA PHILIPPINES
MULBERRY MULBERRY SHOWROOMS THE SHOW THE BOX
DESIGNER SHOWROOMS SAMUEL DOUGAL
CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS HARRY EVANS JOHN ALEXANDER SKELTON
LONDON FASHION WEEK -44-
text | NERYS D’ESCLERCS photos | © ARNAUD MENEROUD -46-
AUSTRIA LEBANON NIGERIA PHILIPPINES
FASHION UTOPIAS -47-
WORLD’S VISIONS AND DREAMS Aside London Fashion week’s shows and events, the British Fashion Council has organized an international fashion showcase held at the Somerset House, called Fashion Utopias. 80 designers from 24 different countries were asked to reflect on their notion of utopia and how to translate it into garments. Visitors had the chance to enter the countries’ room or section, and learn about different cultures through everyone’s notion of utopia. While each emerging designer brought their own interpretation, the countries all concerted themselves to have a common theme. Czech Republic, winning country, evoked Thomas Moore’s utopian island and imagined “The Last Fata Morgana”, where garments could actually represent what people dream of. Lebanon, winner of the curation award, all linked utopia to their traditions and how their past builds their future, in hope to learn from what happened. Lebanon’s room setting played with the idea of Light, existing both in their home as well
as in the common utopian thought. In the Next in Line section, Hala Kaiksow represented her country Bahrain and won the Designer Award. She considered traditional work-wear and turned it into modern garments that blurred the line between male and female. Such interpretations of utopia result from a country’s culture, as each history differs. The sociologist Pierre Bourdieu would call this a country’s cultural capital, or a way of thinking according to a certain background and education – and one’s nationality. Filipinos grew up in times of war and peace, and hence their notion of utopia resulted in it being linked to dystopia. Egypt fished into its traditional symbols, such as the tree of life to illustrate that all should work together to achieve their ideal land. Utopia is relative depending on what people believe, it is defined by the minds and reachable in bringing these thinkers together, as the end goal seems the same for all – an ideal place we could call home. SUPERIOR MAGAZINE selected a few designers to talk to about their notion of utopia and how they applied it to their fashion.
ANOTHER AUSTRIA Austrian designers related timelessness to utopian clothing, as a literal interpretation from Thomas Moore’s Utopia: “Throughout the island, they wear the same sort of clothes without any distinction, except what is necessary to distinguish the two sexes”. Exempting themselves from seasonal trends or common thinking about materials or elements of clothing, these designers reflected on traditions and how to defy them. Designer Dimitrije Gojkovic studied his MA under the mentorship of Hussein Chalayan at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. There, he developed his “New Wool” collection, which completely deconstructed the wool’s heating aspect. Indeed, wool is usually used for winter garments, in coats or clothing that is supposed to keep people warm. Dimitrije decided to change the rules and created flowing outfits that completely messed with the material’s natural connotations. He combined this collection with a pair of shoes he designed for a competition in Spain, Art&Fashion Bilbao. Timelessness here was not only applied to the manipulation of wool, but also to accessories, where the shoes were real pieces of art that do not belong to any specific fashionable season. Another Austrian designer that retained our attention was Isabel Helf and her multifunctional wooden bags. Nerys from SUPERIOR MAGAZINE had the pleasure to meet with her to learn more about these fascinating artefacts. # First of all, tell us a bit about you, what is your background? I’m from Vienna, and I did my BA in womenswear in Austria. Then I moved to London and did my MA in Fashion Artefact at London College of Fashion, I graduated last year. -50-
# And this collection?
Yes. This is my graduating collection, and at the moment I’m working on my next one. I got the funding from International Talent support last year, so I will present it on the 15th of July. # What is the concept behind this collection? Everything started when I found out that I have this neurosis, even my BA collections were about psychological things, so I made a research about it and found out after a while that my neurosis meant that everything needs to be in order, everything needs to have its place within your home. I made a research about this condition and found out that many people in London have the same because the flats are getting smaller and smaller, and the people don’t have enough space within their home, so they need to buy things that
DESIGN BY ISABEL HELF
DESIGN BY DIMITRIJE GOJKOVIC
DESIGN BY ISABEL HELF
fit into minimal spaces. And that’s how the idea started for this collection, to develop artefacts and bags that are multifunctional, so they can be used as bags when you go out or they can be used as a storage when you’re at home, or they can be used as both, and they have hidden drawers. They can be used for many things and they are not in your way when you’re at home. After that, I did a research about people and their homes, where they put their bags and what are their habits, where they would like to put their bags and how it would look. I found out that somehow everything is connected to furniture, that’s how I decided to make my bags out of wood. Making the bags was kind of a therapy for myself, because I have this neurosis, I had to learn a lot about what if it’s not in the right place and how it works. I think it’s also a therapy for other people, because even if you don’t have this neurosis that -51-
everything needs to be in place, everybody gets the satisfying feeling when some things fit together. It’s not just for people who have the same condition as me, it’s for everybody. # Do you think they are more made to be worn and carried, or more as art objects? When I first had the idea about this collection, I wanted to have them more wearable, but I didn’t want to make a super wearable collection, I tried to find an in-between. They are a bit more wearable than other bags are, like from my course for example, but now they are more prototypes and more showpieces, but I’m working on them to make them more wearable. I’m trying other types of wood that are lighter, or different materials. I love to work with wood, but to make it lighter, you might need another material. # How did it come to that final look? I went to 100 people around London, looked at their flats and their bags and their habits. I’m not a person who sketches, I never sit down and sketch, I first took a piece of wood, experimented, made the first prototypes. For every bag, I tried which one sits the best, how a bag looks if it sits on a step for example, on the corner of the step. For each bag I made around four or five prototypes out of different wood, what the best wood is, because one is harder, another is softer, lighter… After all the prototypes, I had to find one, then I just started. It took me a while, there were all the artefacts and then just to make it was the shortest time. # So what wood did you use? There are three types of wood, one is pine walnut, one is wenge and one is tulipwood. I tried different ones and I always wanted to have -52-
different types. Wenge is the most expensive one and the heaviest one. So I wanted to mix it a bit and not every wood is expensive, there is a different range of it. I had to take a wood that is not too soft, because they are quite heavy bags, they need to be quite robust. I made different types of wood, experimented with them, and then I found out that these are the best. This is the first time I worked with wood, and it’s my first accessory collection as well. # Would you want to specialize in accessories or go back to womenswear? Accessories. I would like to go more into product design, I would like to mix accessories and product design. # What is your personal notion of utopia? My personal notion of utopia is something that is innovation, something multifunctional, you can use it for new materials, new ideas, new methods. # So a utopian land would be a land where every object has a purpose? Oh that would be the best land ever! Everything has its place, and everything is perfect, that would be the best land ever! Everything in order. # Do you have any project coming up? Not at the moment, I’m just working on International Talent Support and I’m starting my brand. The collection I am doing is going to be my first with my own brand, Isabel Helf. My logo is three lines, which refers to Isi, because everyone calls me Isi, and it’s in the blind people’s language. # Thank you for your time, and good luck!
DESIGN BY DIMITRIJE GOJKOVIC
DESIGN BY FLORA MIRANDA
BLUEPRINT BEIRUT Lebanon’s room within Somerset House’s West Wing Galleries illustrated the designers’ vision of utopia as related to their homes. The deconstructed arcades recalled a place where rituals and traditions shaped their lives, while remaining modern and forward looking. The eight emerging designers worked on this notion, and how to evolve, while keeping their core values. Nerys from SUPERIOR MAGAZINE met with Nour Najem to talk about her “Cultural Jheiz” collection and how the designer effectively uses her background to establish herself as a womenswear designer. # Firstly, would you mind explaining your background and what you studied? So basically, I started off with a completely different plan. I wanted to go to medical school, because I thought I would like to save the world, or do something really great. But then I realized it wasn’t very artistic and I hated what I was doing, so I went to fashion school and studied an MBA at the same time. I got a BA in Fashion Design, pattern making and all that from Esmod university in Beirut and an MBA from the American university in Beirut.
# Are you now inspired by these work experiences in your designs? I think that I really learnt a lot about the course of action, how to develop a collection, how to have something that’s really coherent. And definitely with defined techniques. When it comes to style, probably Rabih Kayrouz has inspired me quite a bit. But for the rest, it was mostly about techniques and learning how to do things. # So what are you inspired by? So many things! Actually, I never wanted to admit that, but I’m really inspired by architecture, and I don’t want to admit that because I grew up in a family of architects, and I’m trying to escape it so much, but it didn’t work! So I keep on going back to it. # It’s still in your roots.
# And when did you start your label?
Almost three years ago.
# Was this right after graduating? It was six or seven months after that, because throughout university I worked at Ellie Saab, Rabih Kayrouz, Caroline Seikaly and different labels. -54-
DESIGNS BY NOUR NAJEN
# About this collection, how is it related to utopia? Well, basically utopia is where you want to be, where you would like to see yourself in a few years, or in some time. It’s what you would like to see happen with your work, your life, everything. And for me you can’t really know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’re coming from. So the piece I’m exhibiting here is about the trousseau, or basically what women prepare and take with them when they get married, whether it’s clothes, pieces of their everyday life. They’re really things that they would like to keep with them to remind them of where they’re coming from, and pieces that they would like to show off to their new surroundings. If you look at the pieces that I exhibit here, there are so many small details that would remind you of the Lebanese culture heritage. But they come together quite effortlessly and it’s very easy to look at.
# What kind of details? Well, there is a small piece of traditionally hand-woven fabric, a silk brocade from the region that truly doesn’t exist anymore. I think it’s a shame that a lot of our heritage was being left to go to oblivion. And I took the motif of it because it’s quite intricate and beautiful, blew it out of proportions to make some kind of carpet with a floral central motif and I just presented it in the shape of a caftan, an oriental robe that’s very relevant to our culture. And then there’s the other piece, where you have different industrial architectural material that are aluminum and mèche that is used to set the cement in constructions. So I’ve put these together with silk organza, showing the motifs of the Backgammon tables, which are in old houses and also very relevant to our culture. It’s about spending time together, playing Backgammon or just having nice conversations, being together.
DESIGN BY NOUR NAJEN
# That’s a very nice view on utopia. How long did it take to design the pieces?
DESIGN BY NOUR NAJEN
The idea came quite easily, but then putting them in place… The one with the construction material took two weeks of embroidery; it was quite difficult to do. # Would you expand this collection into a bigger one? These are showpieces. But definitely, I would take small elements from them and develop them into a wearable collection. # So are you more into ready-to-wear? Luxury ready-to wear, with a lot of handmade details, things that are quite intricate, very luxurious. Pieces that would feel really made for you and the idea behind everything I do is women working for women, and developing some kind of armour for them to actually go and do whatever they have to do in the world.
# How long have you been teaching these women? The foundation was launched at the same time as my label, so almost three years ago.
# So your garments are empowering women.
# How cool! What are your plans for the future?
Exactly. And women living vicariously through other women because they’re at home. And it works very well with the NGO Kenzah foundation, where I teach women from underprivileged backgrounds handmade details, basically, they are the ones weaving or creating the fabrics that are all handmade for my collections. It’s really as if they were creating armours for other women to go and fight bad treatments or women conditions all over.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to still do what I do because it’s what I love doing most. Just being able to create and show everyone, and teach women because it’s so overwhelming to work with them, and just have people appreciate what I do. Definitely, there is a sales element to it, but I really hope I could do that for as long as I can.
# And the aluminum in your piece can refer back to the armour idea.
Yes. Internationally no, we exhibited in Paris for Tranoï preview last month. And I had a few fashion shows in Dubai, one was in October, and the other one in April last year.
# Was this your first time exhibiting in London?
# Great! Good luck for everything.
DESIGN BY P.O.C -58-
ACROSS THE BLEED For Nigerian designers, utopian fashion translated into a collaboration of their work, based on the fact that “as individual designers we are dreamers, distinct and unique,” explained the Gozel Green two designers. “Therefore, our installation is like a common ground - a dreamland where all dreamers meet in search of perfection (the ideal place) that is in fact unattainable.” This resulted in a room where each design was different, depending on what its creator had to say, but they eventually all found common ground in being a step closer to their dreams. “Utopia is still a dream, and it is relative to individual interpretations, it means something different to each and every one of us,” said Maxivive’s designer. “Nigeria chose to focus on this theme by interpreting and focusing on how ephemeral Utopias by their very nature are and also how unattainable they are,” developed designer Onalaja. “This is communicated by the abstract images in the clothing by the designers - surreal image composition coupled with the mannequins and the
broken up text that needs all images to be aligned to be read - showing that all the designers are part of a communal birthing of Utopias. Each image is distinct, but the text unites them. All the designers are dreamers in their own right, rejecting their current realities and enforcing a new “fiction” through the power of fashion design, clothing and their lives.” Nigerian designer recognized the unattainable aspect of utopia, especially since one’s idea of utopia might not be the same as someone else’s. But although all these differences, everyone is utterly looking for the same thing, which is growing and becoming what we dreamed of. Nigeria’s room in Somerset House “ is a dream state of mind that represents each persons journey to their reality, which for us as designer is simply the act of creating.” stated P.O.C’s designer. If utopia only exists in people’s imagination, these designers have decided to make the best out of it by showing visitors what their dreams are and by which means they try to realize them.
“We all brought something different but whole, from my knit dress with that beautiful terracotta yarn reminiscent of the clay sand in parts of Nigeria and evoking sunsets, Sisiano's flowing forms held together delicately by woven threads, Ejiro's evoking of the religion that binds and governs so many of us in Nigeria, Gozel Green's beautiful architectural clothing, P.O.C's urban and dandyish approach to a basic part of the Nigerian male wardrobe, Maxivive's directional, mad and experimental approach to menswear, Meena's amazing sculptural creations. Everything was picked to highlight aspects of each collection that best communicated a Utopian direction from each brand. In a way, it was not about the items of clothing as objects, but about the ideas they represented in the context of this exhibit.” described Onalaja.
DESIGN BY SISIANO
To push the idea further, the Nigerian designers decided to include virtual reality tools, where each visitor could envision a projected image. “With virtual reality each viewing forces you to understand the depth of the dreamer and how, no matter how many times viewed, there's a different reality.” said Sisiano. Everyone could interpret what they saw differently, just as the garments could mean something different to the designers and their wearer. To conclude, Onalaja exposed that “the Nigerian Utopia is not even fully formed as a dream yet, but it is being developed, it is being dreamed.” A beautiful thought from the designers who will not stop dreaming until their utopia can be synonym to reality.
DESIGN BY MAXIVIVE
DESIGN BY SISIANO
FILIPINOS FASHION U-TURNS The Philippines’ section presented quite an interesting take on utopia, where their ideal could actually only come about once the destructed happened. As the country saw the contrasts between times of war and peace, this idea seemed completely relevant to its past, as well as forward thinking from the designers and showed great strength of mind. SUPERIOR MAGAZINE met with Micki Olaguer, Jared Servaño, Maco Custodio and Thian Rodriguez to have more insight into Filipino’s utopian vision and their respective designs. “Our overall theme is to marry utopia with dystopia,” said Micki, “because we find that one cannot happen without the other, that’s why it’s called Utopian U-turns. Somehow utopia leads to dystopia and so on.” The designers explored this notion of using dystopic materials or ideas, and turned them into works of art, which could lead to an utopian state of mind. Jewellery designer Micki Olaguer decided to deal with the gold mining issue present in the Philippines in a beautiful collection representing their hope for a better future. “I wanted to bring awareness to gold mining in the Philippines,” explained Micki, “because some gold mines employ children as young as 9 years old to 14 years old, and they expose themselves to mercury and face dangerous situations, but it’s all in pursuit of a better life -62-
DESIGN BY MICKI OLAGUER
because they’re trying to feed their families. These pieces illustrate the mineshaft, that’s why it’s distorted and fragmented, because of how unstable it is; their number 1 fear is that it can collapse at any time. I’m sort of illustrating that state of mind. Even though it’s distorted and a fear for some things they are doing, their hope for a better future is giving support to those unstable structures. I decided to use mother of pearl because it’s abandoned in the Philippines, and also because there is no conflict in the harvest of it, it’s in the part of the shell that’s un-needed, it’s a renewable resource, it doesn’t hurt the environment, overall it’s a very healthy material.” This use of material as a symbol of a utopian notion was a recurrent theme across these Filipino designers. Both shoemaker Maco Custodio and womenswear designer Thian Rodriguez used
DESIGN BY THIAN RODRIGUEZ
DESIGN BY THIAN RODRIGUEZ
dystopic materials to change their value. Maco used crisp packaging because “before you create a beautiful place, it is destroyed. I thought of making something out of a material that destroys, a dystopic material. The threads are actually made out of crisp packaging to show that rubbish can be something else. I like to think about it, analyze what its potential could be.” This idea was also used by Thian, who used bullets as rivets: “We all know that bullets destroy, but in my collection they are not destroying at all, in my collection they are holding or connecting everything. That’s the idea of my collection, creating something creative out of a destructive material. It’s actually not recycling the bullets, but up-cycling the bullets.”
way of living could be considered dystopic, in the hope to bring them a better life. “I was inspired by them,” declared Jared, “those people, because they continue to preserve the culture, the tradition of doing such clothes. That’s why I’m in love with this kind of material, and I’m so glad to continue to treat my world on their fabric because this is one of the best fabrics that I saw in our country.” With his beautiful banana hemmed dress, Jared shed light on a Filipino tradition that risks disappearing due to the world’s unawareness of it. Who knew bananas could deliver such a gown?
The fourth designer, Jared Servaño, used a traditional material from indigenous people, whose -63-
This correlation between the two opposite notions resulted in amazing works of art by the designers. Maco’s shoes, that actually represented the creator’s personal notion of Utopia with his dog that passed away last year, were true showpieces. His
pair of shoes with silicone dog noses constituted one of the showcase’s attractions. Jared’s banana hemmed dress could have made it on the red carpet, due to its beautiful Van Gogh’s Starry Night inspired style. Thian’s use of bullets related Filipino history and hence turned the garments into actual cultural elements that would bring awareness to people all over the world. “In times of peace,” said Thian, “they melt the bullets and turn them into musical instruments, like bells and gongs. In times of conflict, they melt them again and turn them into bullets, it’s like a cyclical effect.” A cyclical effect that he decided to push further with his designs, giving the bullet a vital function for the dresses. These four designers really reflected on utopia, and how they can turn dystopic situations, which they encountered in their country, into something beautiful. A way of thinking that certainly deserves some recognition, as instead of being dejected by certain conditions, Micki, Jared, Maco and Thian tried to make the best out of these.
DESIGN BY JARED SERVAÑO
DESIGN BY MACO CUSTODIO
MULBERRY SHOWROOMS THE SHOW THE BOX
text | NERYS D’ESCLERCS photos | © ARNAUD MENEROUD (Showroom) photos | MULBERRY (The Show & The Box) -67-
MULBERRY SHOWROOMS A day after London Fashion Week’s Mulberry show, the brand opened its Head Quarters to press and buyers and presented Johnny Coca’s new collection in their showroom. Johnny Coca is the newly appointed creative director, who left Celine bags for Mulberry’s luxury ready-to-wear. His first collection was hence highly awaited for, in the hope that he would boost the brand’s sales and help it fully regain its reputation. “Britishness is an attitude, something very individual that is not about where you come from,” said the Spanish creative director when arriving at the very British brand, stating here that he knew what he was doing, which he proved with this Autumn/ Winter 2016 collection. -69-
In Mulberry’s showroom, everything called for luxury and exclusivity. In a vast, bright, modern room, garments and accessories were exposed like true works of art. Podiums or cube against the walls contained this season’s new bags, shoes and jewellery – and possibly the next hits. Spread across big tables, one could really spend the entire day here. Yellow and red flowers brought a touch of colour to the immaculate surfaces, where some insiders were working and some buyers had meetings to get their hands on Johnny Coca’s designs first. A touch of colour that Coca also included within the new collection, where the winter palette of black, blue navy, khaki and burgundy was spiced up with bright yellow, orange and red.
As a symbol of Coca’s will to mix tradition with modernity, the new logo put in place certainly was noticeable. From the tree to a more simple bold writing, Coca actually fetched into Mulberry’s archive and found a sketch dating from the ‘70s, back when the brand was created. A sign that Coca truly respects the brand’s traditions and will certainly optimize them. In addition, the creative director alternated winter coats and capes with rock leather jackets, to show that a Mulberry woman can be contrasted depending on her mood, and that she can be classic and modern at the same time. Wandering around this showroom meant getting lost in Mulberry’s world. A glimpse into the top end of luxury, where the finest leather was never so reachable. Visitors were allowed to touch and grab the new collection, while a video of the previous day’s catwalk ran on big screens. The room could represent every girl’s dream closet, with beaded or covered in press studs jackets, that resulted in heavy garments, the real price to pay to look good. Grabbing a burgundy, white and croc bag only translated into everyone being a witness of Coca’s talent in cut and leather manipulation. The designer introduced bags whose outer pocket is removable and hence turns into a clutch – or how to go from day to night wear in a snap. Being invited into Mulberry’s head quarters certainly rhymed with exclusivity. We got the chance to experience and touch their collection, which only increased our longing for next season. Johnny Coca will do wonders and elevate Mulberry on a pedestal, just as he did with the disposition of his bags in this showroom. -70-
ANNA CLEVELAND AND JENNY BASTET
THE BOX SARAH ELLEN
text | NERYS D’ESCLERCS photos | © ARNAUD MENEROUD photos | © SAMUEL DOUGAL (interview) -78-
DESIGNER SHOWROOMS -79-
NEWGEN SHOWROOM -80-
DESIGNER SHOWROOMS For the second season, London Fashion Week was held at the Brewer Street Car Park, in Soho. The Car Park’s third floor hosted the show space, as well as the highly visited Designer Showrooms, where over 150 designers exhibited their new collections to buyers and UK and international press. Over five days, the most talented exposed womenswear, menswear, jewellery, hats, shoes and sunglasses. From Samuel Dougal’s simplicity to Georgia Hardinge’s experimentations with vinyl and pleats, visitors witnessed the future of readyto-wear. Some designers such as Holly Fulton and Steven Tai also held shows and presentations as part of London Fashion Week’s events. Their stand at the showrooms gave the chance to easily access the designers to learn more about the collections they had just presented. These showrooms were also divided into specific sections: the NEWGEN space, sponsored by Topshop, presented UK-based emerging talents such as Faustine Steinmetz, Sadie Williams and Molly Goddard, as it has done so since 1993. The Heavy Showroom showcased their ones to watch with one or two presentations a day, which included four Portuguese and two UK-based designers. Also, the Rock Vault showcased fine jewellery, and the Headonism section presented the best of emerging milliners. These showrooms certainly were a must-go, as they exposed the British Fashion Council’s idea of the next in line. -81-
SAM DOUGAL INTERVIEW At the Brewer Street Car Park, some of Londonâ€™s most talented emerging designers presented their new collections as part of the Designer Showrooms. A great opportunity for buyers and press to talk to the designers and get some insights on some of next seasonâ€™s collections. Nerys from SUPERIOR MAGAZINE talked to Samuel Dougal, a young designer who already caught the eye of great fashion houses and celebrities, such as Paloma Faith and Rihanna.
# Could you describe a bit your life between graduating from London College of Fashion and starting your label? Upon graduating I applied for a job at Alexander McQueen, assistant to Head of Couture, and I got it. I was there for three years, working on their private clients, it was very intricate work, like big show pieces. I learnt a lot of techniques and saw a lot of interesting things come out of there. And then I moved over to Philip Treacy and I learnt there how to be a milliner. I learnt a lot about feather manipulation and hat blocking. It’s another kind of discipline, it’s much more 3D, very sculptural. And then I started my business in 2014 with private clients, I had my own clients, such as Alison Goldfrapp and Amanda Holpen, and then from there I just thought “Right, let’s make it a business!” And that was that! # And do you think your label is influenced by these previous work experiences? Not aesthetically, no. For me, I’m much more simple and more classic, I’d say, than Alexander McQueen. I like to get my inspiration and then kind of reduce it and reduce it and reduce it, until it’s the bare bones of whatever it was, it just creates a kind of purist and minimal look, and to me that’s what I’m inspired by and drawn to. I mean, Macqueen is amazing and I love them, but for my aesthetic it’s not that. It was really good to see the techniques that are done and to learn how to do all that mad stuff. You can put that in a way into something that’s much more simple and quiet. # So are you inspired by another designer that’s really simple like you? I love the work of Hermes, I find it so timeless and the fabrics that they use are just beautiful. And -88-
that’s something that really inspires me, fabrics. I mean for me a collection that is purely a hundred percent British needs fabrics such as Harris Tweed from Liberty’s down to Alpaca, which is hand woven in Somerset; I’ve done my knitwear with Alpaca. # You studied Tailoring at London College of Fashion. Why did you choose to focus on this? I always wanted to be a maker of clothes, and bespoke tailoring in menswear was where I wanted to be, which is why I think some of my pieces are quite masculine in their cut. I think I’ve taken it from studying menswear, learning menswear. The reason behind was just I love making things and spend time, like really crafting something’s that more art in construction, than throw away a piece of fashion. # And why did you now decide to start a ready-to-wear collection? I thought it was the perfect time to do it. For me I just thought “Let’s have a go!” I’ve had to really tone it down; with my clients I can use the best fabrics, the most intricate cuts. I’ve had to really tare what I like back in cuts and in quality of fabric. But I haven’t compromised at all, I’ve enjoyed the challenge of creating something that will go into wholesale and try and keep that kind of passion for the bespoke, translated into readyto-wear. There’s kind of a blurry line between the two. # So would you like your collection to be in stores or in your own shop? I would like to be in department stores, that’s my aim, that’s what I’m going for. We’ll see. I think a shop might be in a few years off.
# You said each piece is designed to compliment the wearer’s body. How do you do this in ready-to-wear? I’ve really considered the cuts, and not constricted them to one size. If you look through he collection, you can wear the pieces no matter if it’s a long or a short body, or wide shoulders. I’ve kind of thought of all that. Each garment will hang slightly different but utterly it will fit and it will look beautiful. That’s key to what’s keeping the cut simple, to have something fitting and that will look good on more people.
# Behind this ready-to-wear collection, what was the design process and how long did it take? It started back in October; my starting point was a piece of Harris Tweed I had woven. It all kind of came from there, the process is all about the fabrics. I barely sketched a thing, it was all done on the stand this time; normally I sketch for clients, but I just didn’t want to feel constricted to what I thought would look good as a drawing, so I worked with the fabric completely. It was a really nice process and way of working, a bit frustrating for my pattern cutters, because they had no idea what to do – but we got there. It was really nice, organic process. I just went with the flow and saw what happened, and it luckily turned out to be a very nice body of work that I’m pleased with.
# Do you have any favourite piece? Yes, it’s an alpaca, we call it a coat slip, it’s kind of a mix between a coat and a jacket, and it’s just so simple, with a little bit of pressure on the waist, and two big black pockets on the front. That’s luxury, but you can just tack it on. If I could wear it I would! # You were inspired by your hometown Cornwall. Could you explain how you translated that into garments? The first point is the timelessness of the place, it’s kind of unchanged and it’s got war drama but it’s subtle, and I feel like that is very inspiring.
So it’s the kind of look that I’m going for. But in a literal sense, the colours, the sand, the car keys, the grass and stuff, it’s a kind of feeling, I mean down there it’s breezy, and the light, and you feel very clean. That’s what I wanted to put into my clothes. # Did you choose the fabrics and colours according to that? No, I mean kind of, but there’s nothing more that I love than kind of dusk and being on the beach and you can see the bright, white sand, and the light it gives, I love that. I thought “what would it be like on the body at dusk?” It’s not too literal, but, in a way, it’s about feeling and being very free. # How nice! Will you keep on creating couture garments and dressing your clients? Yes! There’s two streams within my business, so the ready-to-wear is the new bit, but my business is built on couture. # And what are your plans for after fashion week? Hopefully, production. But I’ve got a lot of client orders that I’ve got to get through. And just moving on to the next season, which I’m totally up for and really excited about. It’s gonna be summer collection, it’s not something I’ve done; a lot of my clients’ pieces are either coats or evening dresses. So it’d be nice exploring lightness in ready-to-wear. # Will you do the next London Fashion Week as well? Yes, I think we’ll be doing some kind of presentation. # Great, good luck for everything!
HARRY EVANS JOHN ALEXANDER SKELTON
CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS -92-
text | NERYS D’ESCLERCS photos | catwalking.com -93-
CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS MA SHOW - CLASS OF 2016 Every year, the prestigious Central Saint Martins college introduces its fashion Master graduating students as part of London Fashion Week on-schedule shows. This year 2016, 16 women’s wear, menswear, knitwear or textiles specialists presented impressive collections, illustrating that the future of fashion is quite promising. The show opened with student Harry Pontefract’s womenswear collection, where nude garments blurred the line between lingerie and ready-towear. Kiko Kostadinov’s menswear garments followed and offered deconstructed work wear on top of black full-body suits. Emma Bergamin Davys then designed half silhouettes in a skillful manipulation of drapes. Fetishism and 80’s secret lives of businessmen were Abzal Issabekov’s themes in his menswear collection. Henriette Tilanus followed with women’s garments full of colours, prints and embroideries to offer fun silhouettes. Then, menswear designer Ajmal Khan sent on the catwalk a series of beautiful oversized outerwear with high waist trousers. Women dressed in black lace and oversized additions of round fabrics were then exhibiting Lynne Searl’s designs. The following designer was Michael Halpern, who dazzled the eyes with flashy mixes of prints and fabrics for women. Amelie Belize twisted the classic work wear by changing the function of garments, with coats being used as skirts in a sexy and feminine
collection. Joanna Wawrzynzak designed women’s wear looks with sheer fabrics and geometric prints. Siiri Raasakka presented amazing drapery for a revisited work wear. L’Oréal prize winner Harry Evans offered a new kind of masculinity, differing from the classic work wear or sportswear, with knits inspired by women’s wear. Sober evening dresses contrasted by an added functionality in the form of backpacks were Austin Snyder’ field of study. The joint L’Oréal prize winner John Alexander Skelton’s menswear collection reflected on a contrast between 1930s workers and thinkers of the surrealism. Following was Alexander Krantz whose women’s wear collection played with velvet and satin for garments that attracted the light. Richard Quinn covered the face of his women only to show his great manipulation of textiles and prints. A great variety of garments for designers who reflected on deeper issues than just putting together some fashion. Saint Martins’ designers did not only dress the body but also addressed the minds. Nerys from SUPERIOR MAGAZINE had the pleasure to meet with joint winners of the L’Oréal Professionnel Creative Award, Harry Evans, knitwear student, and John Alexander Skelton, menswear student, to discuss their collection.
HARRY EVANS -96-
# What did you do before this MA? Before the MA, I was actually here, at Saint Martins and did my BA here, and my foundation as well, so I’ve been here like forever!
# About this particular collection, what was the concept behind it?
# Do you have any work experiences?
It was really personal; I started by thinking about how I dress and what I like. I was feeling like there’s not really any menswear that’s happening now that’s really about somebody like me, that represents me. I feel like there’s so much that’s formulaic and very repetitive. So I really wanted to make a collection that was for modern men, as a younger person who did not have the usual menswear inspirations. I mainly looked at women’s wear and all sorts of folk costumes, dresses. Because I feel like I could do something that was new, without relying on tailoring, or sportswear or work wear, that we see so often.
Yes, in the BA we do a placement year. I went to Meadham Kirchhoff and I also worked at a knit swatching company for a bit, which was kind of the opposite end of that, but it was really worth doing. It was intensive, knitting machines, so I learnt loads about that. It was really commercial, because it was always about making something you can sell, but it was good. # Why did you choose to do this MA? I’ve always wanted to do it, but I think it’s mainly because it’s got the best reputation and the graduates were people that I liked. I wanted to be on that level. Also, I didn’t feel ready to leave after my BA. I wanted to get a bit more polish, and professionalism. I feel like I have now, I’m a bit more ready to leave now. # Why did you decide to do menswear? I started doing women’s wear on my course, and then changed. Just because I’d never done it before and I thought it’d be interesting, I thought maybe I could do something that’s a bit more relevant to now, and a lot more personal I think. # Do you think now you’re going to stay with menswear? I think if I do my own thing, it’d probably be mens or both. But I think if I would work for someone else, I’m open to do either.
# Do you have any influences that helped you achieve these final looks? Quite a lot, if I had to pick, I’d probably say Romeo Gigli and Christopher Nemeth, that kind of romantic feel. I really like doing hand working, and it’s really about what you’re doing, bring a sort of roughness as well. # What kind of hand working did you do? It was really the focus of my knitwear, developing a signature in the collection; I was making these fabrics that are hand crocheted and then hand sewn together. So you have bits where it might be a crochet on top of a knit fabric or crochet backed onto something else, and then all the patterns are all sewn, the jackets are all sewn, it’s all hand done. It was a huge amount of handwork.
# Oh my that take?
# Did you start thinking about the concept back in September?
We’ve been working on it since Christmas, so I was crocheting over the Christmas holidays, came back and put them all together. So the two suits in the collection are actually completely hand crocheted and hand stitched, all the details as well – by me, so yeah… It was a bit of a struggle towards the end but it was worth it.
I was thinking about it before. I was thinking about it all summer, and it continued from what I was doing in the first year as well, which was a less developed version of the final thing. It was already the same textile; I have been developing it since then.
# Well done! I read that you were inspired by the Chanel technique? Yeah! I was inspired by the inner workings of a couture jacket and then also a Chanel tweed, the inside of jacket, the padding, fabric and then hand stitched it. # Do you have any particular piece that reflect that concept really well, or any favourite piece? It would have to be the red knit dress, and the last look which is the white suit with the beads, it’s a heavily worked one. I feel like those two are the ones that are really special to me, they stand out the most. # What was your design process? I started with loads and loads of research, mainly looking at 80s fashion magazines like i-D and The Face, and also Linea Italiana, I really love this Haute Couture, really in-your-face. And then a lot of sketching, just drawing anything and then actually start making based on the drawings. Also applying the textiles that I’d been working with, a lot of shapes.
# Do you have any plans for after university? Nothing definite for now. I’d quite like to do some freelancing or work for somebody else or maybe do my own thing, but I think that’d be later. # How did you feel about presenting your collection at London Fashion Week? Oh it was amazing! It was such a great opportunity; one of the amazing thing about this course is that you have this opportunity. Really really lucky to do that. # And how did it feel to win the prize? I still can’t really believe it, it was really overwhelming. And also they don’t tell you until the last minute, so you do the show and your models go out and they come back and they tell everybody “Don’t undress them”. Then they do the finale and everyone started shouting my name, and the woman was like “you’re going to walk out and come back”, all that. So I was really really really shocked, I wasn’t expecting it, everyone is so talented. # But you deserve it! Thank you.
JOHN ALEXANDER SKELTON -100-
# Tell us a bit about your background, what did you do before this MA? Before, I did my BA at London College of Fashion in menswear. After that, I worked at a company called Ethos for a little while, and then I designed for COS for about a year and a half. # Did these work experiences influence you in any way? Not really, no. I almost rebelled, I really detested it. I hated what they were about and their ethics and what they were doing, the whole process. Mainly the latter company but… I mean, I learnt a lot while I was doing it but when I started to see how the system worked, it’s shocking. When you see how much waste there was within a company. That got me a lot more interested in sustainability and how fashion needs to change, because fashion is the second largest polluter in the world, which is ridiculous. It absolutely needs to change. # Is this why you decided to this MA? Not really, I always wanted to do the MA. I had a place before and I differed when I got the job, so that was not the reason why I wanted to do it. But it was certainly something I wanted to pursue when I was on the MA. # After this MA are you going to establish a sustainable label? Yes. It’s something I want to push and I want it to be visible in my own work, but I don’t want to be overshadowed by it. I just want my clothes to be sustainable, but a lot of people use these kinds of things as marketing tools, which is something that I don’t want to do because that’s not the way that it’s going to move forward. It’s going to move forward by people just doing it and making their -101-
clothes without trying to make everybody aware that it is sustainable. I’d rather just do it without constantly focusing on talking about it. # About this particular collection, what was the concept behind it? The starting point was a survey which started in 1936, and it was a survey which was sociological, anthropological that rooted in surrealism; all its founders were surrealists, one was a painter, one was a poet, writer, photographer, anthropologist, and they set out to find out what the mood of the working class was at that time. Because in England, the North was very industrial, completely industrial and virtually all working class. They were an unknown entity to people from the South, so they wanted to discover what the mood of the people was at the time, because they had no voice basically. They moved to a place called Bolton and they lived there and carried out this survey, in various different forms, but the main thing that I was interested in was the interplay between the observer and the observed, because the observers were very different, the surrealists were very flamboyant, they were men that had Oxbridge, Cambridge backgrounds, so there was a contrast with the observed. My silhouette became influenced by them, by their flamboyancy. And my materials, or the fabrication took a lot of inspiration from the working class and what they were wearing at that time, so raw, unfinished wools and very humble materials. # Do you have one particular piece that represents best your concept? Not really, I think the whole thing represents it. Otherwise I wouldn’t have made one look, there’s not one that’s more than the other. It’s a whole.
# And do you have any favourite piece? Yes! I really like the coats. My favourite piece is a waistcoat-trouser one-piece, which I really like. It’s something that I’d like to wear, I guess. # What was the design process? There was a lot of research, not just from the survey, but a lot of sourcing research, and a lot of background research. I went to the place where the Survey took place, there’s an archive there. There’s another archive in Sussex where I went too. I spoke to a lot of people who look after the archives. From that, I had woven my own wool, which is from a British fleece; the knitwear is like a rare breed of sheep. And it’s all sustainable. It took a lot of research to get to that point without compromising what the product was, because obviously it was something I wanted to do. # How long did it take? Can’t even remember! It’s like one big blur. A lot of work. # Are you going to develop further this idea in future work? Yes, I think my work has become a continued conversation. From when I started the MA, it’s been that way. And I’d like to continue it that way. # So did you research on this survey last year? Yeah, I touched on it already. But because it’s such a massive subject, I did not have time to go into it fully. That was why I chose to go into it completely with my collection. But then there are
so many different ways that I can take it. A lot for the future. # Why did you decide to specialize in menswear? I guess it’s natural, due to my sex. It’s just something that I feel comfortable with and I’ve just naturally always been interested in clothes, in dressing myself. It would be weird if I started doing specifically womenswear. But I don’t see my menswear as being just menswear, id like it to be both. I’d like it to be unisex. I think it’s a shame if it’s just pinned down to one sex should wear it. # Do you feel like this collection can be considered unisex? Definitely! My silhouette is ranged between very masculine and also feminine. Girls have worn it and they looked great in it. # How did it l’Oreal prize?
Bizarre. I don’t know, I just wasn’t expecting it and it was a very nice validation for me, that someone respects what I’ve done and validates the work that I’ve done. So it’s not just me thinking about it, there’s someone else that’s managed to grasp it and appreciates it, that was really nice. I’ve not even had chance to really think about it still. # Well done!
text | JANA WILMS photos | JASON LLOYD EVANS -107-
The British luxury brand Belstaff presented their Autumn/Winter 2016 "Polar Pioneer" collection during London Fashion Week at the Holy Trinity Church Marylebone. They followed the pre-Fall theme of "Heading North" and again, turned their attention to polar expeditions. This collection was inspired by Edith "Jackie" Ronne's great Antarctic expedition of 1947, an American journalist and historian, who was the fist woman to be a working member of an Antarctic expedition, led by her husband Finn Ronne. She conducted research for 15 months at a small station the 21-member team had set up on Stonington Island in Marguerite Bay, on the west side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Similar to "Heading North", "Polar Pioneer" celebrated a mix of polar and moto inspirations, influenced by wintry landscape textures of snow, icebergs and rocks, with a nod to Inuit dress. Delphine Ninous, VP of Women's Design explains: "Protection from the elements, warmth and comfort are key themes, as are the stylistic influences derived from these lands and the animals and people that inhabit them." As for outerwear, wearability and luxurious comfort was what Belstaff had in mind. Colour-blocking using a polar-inspired palette, and the combination of different natural fibres to create a rich patchwork motif that was echoed throughout the entire collection, were both key messages for coats and outerwear this season. The polar environment was evoked using an off-white palette and polar fur prints; the calfskin patchwork was inspired by Inuit costume, and the white Mongolian shearling offered something new and fresh to Belstaff’s outerwear. Leatherwear comprised new silhouettes such as a bomber jacket in a very tactile tumbled leather. The introduction of an extremely lightweight and waterproof padded leather biker reinforced the protective theme, while a crackled off-white/tan suede biker jacket revisited Belstaff’s rugged moto heritage in a polar key. A café racer with lace-up details and Belstaff’s signature quilted shoulders also featured a new embroidered Phoenix emblem -109-
(the traditional Belstaff logo), while the statement piece of the season came courtesy of a khaki and natural skin Mongolian shearling coat with calfskin detailing. Keeping up with the polar theme, many of the leather pieces came with a variety of furlined collars for added warmth. Going into sportswear Belstaff was further exploring the Inuit / patchwork themes, this season’s sports / casualwear consisted of two different but complementary focuses: a very comfortable rich indigo selvedge denim employing the patchwork concept and fringing combined with a more feminine, textured and novelty style featuring pleating in leather and organza in wrap skirts, asymmetrical hems and fringe tape detailing. A silk bomber jacket with an embroidered Phoenix on the back and its complementary jumpsuit gave a nod to contemporary trends. Pleats were a strong detail this season, some in icy transparent organza, some in leather, adding fluidity and femininity in contrast to the fur and leather outerwear pieces. This season's polar theme pervaded the knit offering with cable knits created from combining shearling and fur, knitted leather worked into the yoke of a jumper, various fringes and hand-applied cables. There were also some graphic motocross-inspired sweaters - with elbow patches or refined with shoulder patches in gauze for second skin sweaters. A standout knitwear piece was a cosy cashmere cabled one-suit – a hybrid of a biker’s leather racing suit and a thermal onesie. And we can't forget about shoes and accessories, where the calfskin motif seen throughout this season’s coats had been further emphasized in both footwear and accessories. A new boot silhouette with a block heel was introduced and the theme of luxurious-utility-inspired-by-travel was the catalyst for a new backpack and bum-bag.
photography by CHEN CHEN styling & art direction by LINDSAY HILLENBRAND make-up by KRISTINA ZAULA hair by TOMMY TAYLOR models GEORGE & FINNLAY
shirt KLINT THINGS jacket ZHENG KE jeans ZHENG KE boots VINTAGE
MARCH March2016 2016
shirt ZHENG KE jumpsuit ZHENG KE choker STYLIST’S OWNED
top TAEYOUN PARKER jeans ZHENG KE
MARCH March 2016 2016
total outfit ZHENG KE
top KLINT THINGS jacket JASMINE GRANT pants ZHENG KE boots VINTAGE
MARCH 2016 March
top MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU skirt JASMINE GRANT
MARCH 2016 March
top MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU
dress MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU jeans MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU boots SPORTS DIRECT
MARCH 2016 March
top MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU pants TAEYOUN PARKER
top TAEYOUN PARKER pants TAEYOUN PARKER jacket ZHENG KE boots HUNTER
MARCH 2016 March
top MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU pants THE KOOPLES coat TAEYOUN PARKER boots VINTAGE
Y O U R EDITORIAL -140-73-
MAY 2015 DIGITAL
EDITORIALS FROM FEBRUARY @ SUPERIOR ONLINE
»ABSENCE OF JUDGEMENT«
Raisoull Satyam Rai
»COLOUR PALETTE« Kevin Vandenberghe
»FASHION ON BRAINWAVES«
»FIRE & ICE«
»I AM THE REBEL« Kate Woodman
»LA FEMME MACABRE«
Roy Von Elberg
»TIME FOR CONTRASTS«
YAU HO YI
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photography by RAISOULL SATYAM RAI
styling & art direction by IRINA BELOUS, TEODORA MARACINEANU, NABEENA NUSRATH make up & hair styling by AURORA MONEA model RISA BELLAK
dress GILDA GIAMBRA jacket EDWARD ACHOUR PARIS
jacket & skirt ALBERTO ZAMBELLI shirt MTWTFSS WEEKDAY -132-
top ZARA jacket DAVID DALRYMPLE FOR HOUSE OF FIELD skirt ESSENTIEL ANTWERP sneakers NIKE
dress GILDA GIAMBRA jacket EDWARD ACHOUR PARIS shoes NIKOLAS K
coat & shoes NIKOLAS K top ZARA pants MESSAGERIE
top ZARA pants MESSAGERIE shoes NIKOLAS K
photography by MICHAEL GERMOSÉN
photography assistant ROSNIL CORREA model RAIZA NOHELIA LÓPEZ top ELECTROSHOCK -141-
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# APRIL 2016