4 January 2019

London Fashion Week Men’s: Ones to Watch

There's something satisfying about the way that the newly christened London Fashion Week Men's (formerly London Collections: Men's) falls at the beginning of January. What says fresh start more than the prospect of a whole new wardrobe? What better time to throw it all out and start again? But let's not get ahead of ourselves. The menswear industry is one in flux. There's been a quiet exodus from the schedule, with global powerhouses Gucci and Burberry (to name but a few) ditching menswear shows to present a unisex offering during womenswear week. It's begged the question: is a menswear month still feasible?

That said, menswear should not be counted out just yet. Because, season after season, it has a canny knack of defining the womenswear that comes in the weeks afterwards. So, see this, perhaps, as a turning point. How will menswear designers make sense of the world around them? Can clothes become political weapons?

Vivienne Westwood would certainly say so, having for years turned her shows into as close to a political rally as a fashion show can be. She returned last year to London from Milan, showing what was not just a homecoming, but also a powerful call to arms. Where better to do so than the city where it all began?

Hyberbolic catwalk performance at Charles Jeffrey, Art School's highly anticipated debut solo show and Fashion East first-timers to watch Mowalola and Robyn Lynnch: here's my pick of the buzz-worthy shows to have on your radar during London Fashion Week Men's AW19 this weekend...