London Fashion Week S/S 2012 Menswear Catwalk Review: Asger Juel Larsen Vs t.lipop

On 21st of September at Vauxhall Fashion Scout's Freemasons' Hall, Asger Juel Larsen and t.lipop impressed me with their seemingly contrasting menswear collections and I was a bit starstruck by Kate Moss... and Prince Cassius.

Written by Maria Papadimitriou

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Faye West

t.lipop S/S 2012 by Faye West

Asger Juel Larsen versus t.lipop – not the first time to appear together – showed at Vauxhall Fashion Scout on the last day of London Fashion Week and gave me my most interesting queueing experience during this season. Upon arriving there was a multitude of cool young things waiting to go in – to my delight a lot of them were boys wearing big chunky jewellery! – while a little later the marvellously coiffured Prince Cassius joined the queue behind me, quickly to be noticed and taken inside by the Blow PR girls. While I felt a little saddened that my co-queueing with Prince Cassius was so brief, I overheard a girl saying ‘oh, there is Kate Moss!’, which quickly distracted me from my loss. Immediately the whole queue, as if choreographed, leaned to the right to take a peak and of course a few cameras pointed towards her and husband Jamie Hince.

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Gemma Sheldrake
Asger Juel Larsen SS12 by Gemma Sheldrake

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

After being seated in the packed space inside, Asger Juel Larsen‘s models started coming out fast and aggressively. I really enjoyed elements such as the slightly twisted animal prints or the spiked prosthetic beards – reminding me of Bearded Dragons under threat – both of which impressively spelt out ‘wildness’. One of those spiked beards worn by a girl as well as a glorious chain mail army style headpiece with bull horns added the notion of the ‘beast’ to the collection. I am all for a little bit of bearded ladies and mythological creatures such as the Minotaur!

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Gareth A Hopkins
Asger Juel Larsen S/S 2012 by Gareth A Hopkins

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Maria Papadimitriou aka Slowly The Eggs
Asger Juel Larsen S/S 2012 by Maria Papadimitriou aka Slowly The Eggs

I thought the themes of wilderness, fighting and survival suggested by the symbolism described above were brilliantly complimented by a number of woolly hats with different metal letters stitched onto them spelling out the phrase ‘we live’. Further allusions to survival through sexual expression were added by a round stitched logo at the back of a jacket reading ‘happiness is a warm pussy’ and the brothel creepers some models wore – shoes originally worn by ex-soldiers visiting nightspots in London.

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Claire Kearns

Asger Juel Larsen S/S 2012 by Claire Kearns

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by The Pern

Asger Juel Larsen S/S 2012 by The Pern

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Jess Sharville

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Jess Sharville

Asger Juel Larsen S/S 2012 by Jessica Sharville

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

Asger Juel Larsen LFW SS12 menswear portrait by Maria Papadimitriou

The contrast between Asger Juel Larsen and the designer that followed, t.lipop, was seemingly like war and peace. t.lipop favoured a palette of pale blues, camel, white and stone, with a splash of bright orange. It was an array of generally relaxed and flowing pieces that calmed us a little after what came earlier. We saw tailored smart jackets and trousers, minimal tops and long untucked shirts that were far less aggressive, even with feminine touches such as fringed adornments and embroidery.

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Celine Eliott
t.lipop S/S 2012 by Celine Eliott

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Vasare Nar
t.lipop S/S 2012 by Vasare Nar

Looking closer, however, I thought there were similarities in the underlying themes of the two collections. T.lipop’s gentlemanly clothes reminded me of movies starring wealthy imperialists in warm exotic countries – suggesting aggression and war – while the long hair and full beards on the models evoked images of castaways striving for survival. Some of the monochrome outfits with their collarless round necklines looked similar to uniforms seen in hospitals’ operating theatres or emergency units, whilst wide brimmed hats alluded perhaps to field workers, both adding to the – admittedly subtle this time – undertones of struggle and self-preservation.

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Celine Elliott
t.lipop S/S 2012 by Celine Elliott

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

t.lipop LFW SS12 menswear by Matt Bramford

t.lipop portrait LFW SS12 menswear by Maria Papadimitriou

With so many interesting references and inspirations in both collections, when Prince Cassius tweeted me to say he really enjoyed the show I could only tweet back in agreement!

All photography by Matt Bramford.
Photo portraits of designers by Maria Papadimitriou.

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