EDWARD CRUTCHLEY | FW17
BOXPARK Shoreditch | ★★★★
Address | 2-10 Bethnal Green Rd, London E1 6GY, UK
Phone | +44 20 7033 2899
Years ago, when I first started attending New York Fashion Week, I never thought my trajectory would later include London Fashion Week as well. London Fashion Week is known for its gritty, almost earthier take on fashion, particularly for menswear. It's certainly a notch more edgy, though not nearly as avant garde as Paris Fashion Week. As I breezed and bounced through the very thoughtful, very sensibly curated collections at Barbour, Harry’s of London and emerging designer booths at The Strand, I couldn’t help but overhear simmering conversations of LFWM’s dissipating crowds and attendance. To be fair, there is some reasoning behind that — designers, particularly independent and start-up, e-commerce shops hoping to hit it big, have become quite frugal (not to mention, sensitive and mindful) towards unnecessary, extravagant expenses like putting on an entire show. Fashion shows were once a highly-regarded platform (in my opinion, it still is for the right brand with plenty of capital and corporate backing), but whether it's been augmented or weakened by the advent of social media, the constant need for instant gratification as attested to the “see-now-buy-now” concept, remains to be seen.
This is not to say that I’ve become jaded all of a sudden. I love fashion weeks and attending them. I still see the magic, socio-political and artful impact of a fashion show. Thom Browne, Maison Martin Margiela, Iris Van Hepren and similarly fashion-forward designers continue to produce runway shows that intrigue and inspire conversation about the world around us. Still, the shadows of fast, disposable fashion looms large and increasingly, social-media savvy brands no longer see the need for all the pomp and circumstance ($$$$) to produce a “one-of-a-kind” show. Alas, these stream of consciousness thoughts are just that…streams of thought, observations and opinions intersecting together.
Ruminating thoughts aside, I thoroughly enjoyed my time in London town. Even if I only got to hit up the places I really wanted see and be, in the span of four days, like the Tate Modern and the ever-notorious, David Sprigley-designed pink dining room at Sketch. It’s back to packing up again as I leave for NYFWM tomorrow. But it’s not going to be business as usual; as I do, I am keeping in mind the domestic and international atrocities that have erupted since Trump’s administration has taken over. Keeping the people who are deeply affected by the ego of one egomaniac in my prayers and sending best wishes to all. Please know that I see you, I am with you, and I am here for you.