LFW Men - Relax, don't do it
Tuesday was referencing Holly Johnson of Frankie Goes To Hollywood's penchant for grey leather jackets in a written piece about The Achingly-Hipsters of E8 and what their choice of white shirt should be. Had to take images from the Relax video, as couldn't find others. The look is a mix of Scally and futuristic Eighties blouson action, complete with Ray-Ban Wayfarers. Looking pretty, pretty cool Holly. (click to see video. NB. Banned version at end of post)
Wednesday, was sat next to Holly in the front row of the Christopher Shannon show. In grey leather jacket, he remarked that he liked my new pale grey leather Thomas Lyte bag, and so our grey leather banter began. His manner is brilliant, simultaneously earnest and piss-taking about style matters. Holly, I salute your style. Blouson style and innovative interpretations were discussed, and the joy of pale grey leather and which colours went well with it. Burgundy, Maroon, that sort of thing.
This serendipitous meeting was significantly better that a later random fashion based introduction that day. After the shows, (to be reviewed shortly) and the RAKE party at Matches, the team and I went to the James Small do at the W Hotel on Leicester Square. The girls wanted to go, so what can one say when they are semi-running your schedule. The hotel is a glittering and sparkling affair, and is apparently intentionally quite naff. Strikes me as poor location and out of date style, but I really wouldn't know.
Anyway, was having a bit of laugh, as a couple of pals were in attendance as well as Smal'ls celebrity set friends whom he rolls with. They're the Kate Moss/Bobby Gillespie/Mark Ronson crew, who were all plotted in the VIP which I now occupied with my far smaller mob. I had reviewed his show a year ago, and I didn't think it was any good. I slated it a bit, and the whooping from the celebrity pile during show. Silly me. Got introduced to Small by the DJ booth by a mutual friend. It didn't go well and Small told me to leave. It was his do, so what could I do? Was keen to not get manhandled out of the gaff, so made a couple of points about free speech, free drinks and the time it would take for the bouncers to find me, and slipped out un-molested. He was getting angrier as the seconds past. A scuffle would have been a bad thing I think. He did me a favour really as was quite late.
Makes me wonder about reviewing stuff. Is one supposed to write polite, pr'd, and sanitised reviews? Its a genuine question. It's someone's whole work you're commenting on which is tremendously personal. It's horrid to read negative comment. Then again, no-one said this was a charity scenario. Men's fashion is well tough. Good stuff is dead hard to do, and that's just how it is. I understand once you've said someone's clothes are pony, you cant expect to drink their Moscow Mules, but is that beef for life with Small and I now? Might be a bit of an effort. I hope I've got another 9.5 years left in me, so better toughen my hide up, eh. Perhaps James should too. Here's an idea: I didn't attend Small's show this time, but I shall post an (almost) unreviewed shot of his work to make up for last years dismissal. This is from the show earlier the same day.
I don't always get the really trendy stuff to be fair. Wizard sleeves on a velvet parka is quite a striking look, so I'm taking it that Small is moving forward creatively from 'found objects and layering' of previous show. Not sure Holly would have worn it. Or Paul Rutherford. But there's a theatre to it that might have worked well in the Eighties perhaps. Might I suggest James's pal Noel Fielding as 'Gandalf the Mod' would be the perfect muse. Keep it up Mr. Small.
Perhaps my new mantra for writing uncensored show reviews should come from Frankie Goes to Hollywood? (Now here's some reference points to work off)
Yeah right. Brace yourselves.