London Collections: Men S/S '15 – Day One Report

The verdict on Sunday's biggest shows

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1 | dunhill (above)

It was to Horse Guards Parade that the dunhill man unpacked his generous size leather weekend bag and paraded its cherished contents in a haphazard eclectic way. The colour palette of mustard, blossom pink & coffee on slub silks, fine canvas & over scaled herringbones looked decidedly English for this driving-obsessed man. The mixed up bag of pieces felt effortless in its pairing, with the ubiquitous double breasted jacket thrown over light knits & tapered cotton trousers made this a grown up collection that was rooted in dunhill's driving heritage. dunhill.com
– Gareth Scourfield

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2 | Kent & Curwen

Recently installed creative director Simon Spurr took influences from the worlds of rock music, rodeo and the military for his broad reaching second collection at Kent & Curwen. Paying homage to the brand's history of producing cricket jumpers, Spurr teamed slim cut, light takes on the staple with patterned pony skin and high shine leather cowboy boots, slim cut white jeans, ribbed trench coats, splinter patterned shirts, military inspired brocade jackets and Breton tops. The key piece was a laser cut leather jacket in a jewel shade of cobalt
– Teo van den Broeke

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3 | Topman

 

 

Topman's journey for SS15 took us on a 1970's West Coast road trip, where the popular high waist sun bleach flared denim underpinned this thrift shop inspired story. Think Robert Redford in the 1973 film the Way We Were. Floral print short sleeve shirts were layered over fine knits. The sorbet coloured palette played out across the 1970's cut t ailoring with puddling flared trousers. Patterned knits and towelling tied jackets added to the west coast beach beat.  Soft round toe low sneakers, oversized aviators & a spattering of fur trim light parkas gave a nod to Jim Morrison meets Liam Gallagher. A decidedly upbeat show!
– Gareth Scourfield

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4 | Hardy Amies

 

 

There aren't too many names in fashion as storied as Hardy Amies -- Special Operations Executive during WWII, dressmaker to the Queen and author of The ABC Of Fashion, a gig that sprung from his regular Sixties Esquire column. Naturally Mr Amies was also something of an aesthete - hence current design director Mehmet Ali being able to draw from an unlikely source for the s/s 2015 collection -- Hardy's interior design collection, particularly his wallpaper.

Here his signature unstructured jackets are given a summery twist using woven chevron fabric, the printed grid design also seen on duffle bags and shoes. Double breasted jackets in chambray blue and poplin shirts in pistachio were also highlights of this colourful, confident collection. Ali's genius is to stay true to Amies' original vision by driving deep into the records - and , apparently,  the walls - of the archive, while giving everything a luxurious, modern and very London twist. Much like the man himself.
– Johnny Davis


5 | Jonathan Saunders

Master of pattern and fabric interplay, Jonathan Saunders hit the high notes once again with his SS'15 collection. Wide ribbed sweaters and horizontal striped knitwear in autumnal pastel tones were particularly strong. The women's resort collection was also on show, which would suggest that Saunders has grand plans yet for his company. The pieces, on the whole, were interchangeable and straddled the barrier between smart and casual with ease. Tailored trousers cut from sporty fabrics and Saunders' signature mesh bombers stood out.
– Teo van den Broeke
 

6 | Richard Nicoll

 

 

This was a show that concentrated on proportion. Nicol effectively put together a more minimal collection where the focus was on light layering. Pinstripe shirting with untucked tails flowed under neater papery cotton bombers. Hues of blue wafted across knee length chambray shorts, panelled shirts & summer blazers. As is Nicol's strength the quieter colours were punctuated with zingy citrus yellows and oranges in sporty bombers and the new utility trouser in ultra lightweight cotton with thigh & back poacher pockets. The strong block colour was offset with panels of paisley prints. There was even a posh onesie fashioned from a ultra fine gingham cloth.
– Gareth Scourfield


7 | DKNY

This was DKNY's first show in London, and it stood up to the city's exacting standards with gusto. Slim, turned-up trousers came teamed with short-sleeved sweatshirts, chunky footwear including plenty of this season's essential slip-on sneakers. The palette – dominated by navy, white, black and grey (in addition to the occasional splash of canary yellow) was matched by the sharp, minimal cut. A streamlined synthesis of DKNY's street wear sensibility and London's creativity, this was a wearable collection with its finger on the pulse.
– Teo van den Broeke

 

8 | Gieves & Hawkes

 

Gieves & Hawkes creative director Jason Basmajian held court outside today’s static presentation at the White Cube gallery in Mayfair, explaining that he wanted this collection to seem ‘modern, but young’. Since arriving at the venerable royal label 18 months ago, Basmajian has consistently upped his game, transforming the well-liked but underperforming 1 Savile Row institution into one of the true must-see events of London Collections: Men. For spring / summer 2015 there was something for everyone: beautiful suede bomber jackets and knee-length navy raincoats atop mesh knits and flattering shorts on one floor, and a set of immaculate slim-cut grey, blue and cream suits accompanied by scarves, ties and knitwear on the other. It’s difficult to think of a label reinvention that’s been as convincing and complete as Gieves’ has. The completion of the refurbished Savile Row store in September will seal the deal.
– Johnny Davis