Illustration by Krister Selin
Christopher Shannon burst back on to the catwalk on Menswear Day at London Fashion Week in typical chav-luxe fashion. Menswear day was a bit hot and cold this season – some of the shows were extremely busy, but when I arrived at Christopher Shannon’s there didn’t seem to be that many attendees, so I plonked myself on the front row and fiddled with my iPhone in a bid to look belonging and important. I even adjusted my crumbling posture (which is hella difficult after the cruel strains of back-to-back slumping at shows).
Illustration by Michelle Urvall Nyrén
The show soon filled up, mind, and I was squashed along the frankly miserable BFC benches. Shannon’s infamous taste in music with which I wholeheartedly side (Rihanna’s What’s My Name and Te Amo being this season’s choice tunes) began the show, and out popped the street-cast models we’re familiar with. Some of them look terrified, some achingly nonchalant, but all are suited to Shannon’s unique take on menswear.
A mix of jersey sweatshirts, scarves and oversized rucksacks started the show – each with a Shannon twist. Shirts were cut through the middle to mix up the patterns – this time with a more ‘worldly’ influence. His obsession with sportswear derives from the fact that wherever you go, ‘there’s always sportswear’ – too true – and Shannon has drawn upon the variations of sportswear in different cultures for this ‘Hold Yer Head Up’ collection.
Illustration by Oscar Rubio
Bolder prints – abstract forms that have a more biological feel (influenced by his affection for David Attenborough!) make up the body of designs. Later came shirts separated down the middle in varying ways – sometimes texture, sometimes colour. Some shirts had woven-blanket details with different kitsch embellishments – a surprising move but a welcome one nonetheless.
Shannon’s clean nylons were spiced up with some frou-frou details this season – I wouldn’t be seen dead in any of this (mostly because my friends would snort, point and laugh) but I think the aesthetic of it is just fabulous. The lights, imposing over the catwalk, bounced in between each ruffle to give a shiny, futuristic look. A colour palette of navy blue, black, grey came with splashes of colour from the woven elements and bits of baby pink to remind us that this is still sportswear. Flat caps and flashy vibrant trainers complimented each outfit.
Illustration by Maria Papadimitriou
Much preferred the Eastpak collaboration rucksacks this time – again, the woven blanket details showed up and looked ace.
But, in spite of all this, I’ll forever remember Christopher Shannon’s A/W 2011 outing for those incredible Frank Sidebottom-esque hair-dos and embellished eyebrows. Why, you might ask? Because this is FASHION, darling.
See more of Krister Selin and Michelle Urval Nyrén’s illustrations in Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration!
A/W 2011, BFC, chavs, Christopher Shannon, Eastpak, Ethnic, Eyebrows, Flat caps, Frank Sidebottom, Krister Selin, London Fashion Week, Luxe, Maria Papadimitriou, Menswear Day, Michelle Urvall Nyrén, Oscar Rubio, Rihanna, Rucksacks, Somerset House, sportswear, Te Amo, What's My Name?
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