A rainy morning – to quote Vince Cable, “grey skies over Britain” – and everyone’s at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden for a triple dip succession of sunny Americana menswear…
1. Martine Rose (top right) showed a colourful collection of 70s SoCal skaters seen through an androgynous magic mirror – boys and girls who all look like boys, baggy skirts and snoopy braids, sheer bondage tights and semi-opaque shirting over fluorescent hues. Hot colours were conjured up on psychedelic pineapples, crazy sticker-print fabrics, and CAT boots complete with labels and lots of extra laces… Sunkist by a Rose!
2. Homerton’s very own Hedi-Slimane-meets-Ayn-Rand – Mr Matthew Miller (top left) – showed slick-haired, sharp-suited American Psychos in tarpaulin anoraks and also a trailing cape in the sort of rain sheet Patrick Bateman might use for an Upper-Eastside murder! Oh, and, they also wore scuba socks, neon strips and all-over bumbag protrusions. After the show one of Miller’s most fresh models, Matt from Select, took us all to a coffeeshop for a discussion of Randian theory – because the bonkers press release begins with the quote, “In order to live, man must act; In order to act, he must make choices…” All in all, not so much a reinvention of spring/summer’s wardrobe as a libertarian polemic against All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace and a remaking of the stock-broking Randian hero for the recession era… “He must define a code of values, He must know where he is and what he is.” Shouts out to David Hopwood too!
3. And to finish, Shaun Samson (bottom left and right) smashed up the show with Rainbow Island surfs-up striping and impossible techno-fabric-fusion: black shorts dip-dyeing into denim grunge, crazy-coloured textures melting away into crispy cotton… even the sunglasses came with a chroma-fade from a 2 Fast 2 Furious paint finish. Music quickly transmogrified from “Bleach” by Nirvana into Weezy freestyles into Outkast’s “So Fresh And So Clean (Clean)”, while Lil-Kim-loving i-D super stylist Matthew Josephs added unexpected, refreshing rudeboy vibes: blood bandanas, diamond studs, flowing open shirts, and Shaun’s initials buzz-cut into a couple of the model’s crops. The best collection yet, and the MAN show evs!
Text: Dean Kissick