mercoledì 2 marzo 2011

Menswear Installations AW11: Baartmans and Siegel

For me, nothing represents the diversity of menswear design talent quite like the NEWGEN MEN and Fashion East Menswear installations. I excitedly bounced from room to room in the wings of Somerset House uncovering the beautiful alongside the wonderful and even the unusual, it was discovery at every turn. I did however encounter a few familiar faces and designs. One of the most welcome sights was Baartmans & Siegel's strong presence in a room of much design delight.

Last month I was treated to a full preview of Baartmans & Siegel's AW11 collection, Deckard. Here, the design duo evolved their offering by developing these signatures even further and have introduced new covetable threads such as the interspersion of draped, soft, rounded tailoring amongst the sharp cuts and have experimented with even more tactile fabrications that provoke endless stroking and much luxurious comfort. Functional items that effortlessly combine luxury with a sense of protection throughout. This is performance lux and it was great to see it alongside the likes of Agi & Sam, Marwood and company.

Self described as modern-traditionalists, Wouter Baartmans and Amber Siegel’s work focuses on beautiful fabrics that seduce, and shapes that are accessible yet distinctive. Once again, fabric is key for AW11. Here the collection predominantly uses a variety of silks, wools, linens and mohairs and I didn't need an excuse to stroke them once again. I certainly won't grow tired of seeing this collection and long to have the odd item hanging in my wardrobe. As previously discussed, Deckard takes its inspiration from the 1982 science fiction film Blade Runner and the futuristic noir-scape it details. However, rather than an obvious homage to the dystopian urban characters and scenes created by Ridley Scott, the pair looked deeper and picked out key themes to create pieces that are wonderfully subtle yet highly wearable and detail rich. I was however, struck by the latest look book which sees the pieces take a more editorial edge, echoing the iconic film in the process. With this in mind, I just had to share them with you...

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