James Long Sets the Bar High in his S/S’13 Collection

by Katie on June 19, 2012

James Long’s star has been on the ascendant for a few seasons now, his just-edgy-enough clothing attracting numerous awards along the way, and a high-profile stockist in the shape of Harvey Nichols.

Titled ‘Kung-Fu Cowboy’, from Alan Vega of Suicide’s song of the same name, there is something of the feudal warrior about the Royal College of Art graduate’s Spring/Summer 2013 menswear collection, the sturdy pleated culottes and sleeveless leather jackets with neoprene panels (the culottes actually shorts with pleated sections which continue up into the belt loops of a high waist).

Abstract metal embellishment adorns a simple grey sweater, and these abstract patterns, which remind me of Jean-Charles  de Castelbajac’s post-modernist designs for Iceberg, are repeated on Long’s now-signature chunky knits, handcrafted using bamboo and cotton yarns.

Surface texture is the real crux of this collection, silver embroidery and printed black lines explode with geometric precision across white shirts, and woven textiles, such as a double-faced waffle fabric inspired by the work of German Bauhaus artist Josef Albers, feature heavily, whilst there is a curious interplay between matte and sheen.

Finally, for all us accessory addicts out there, a man-clutch, whose patchwork of plain and patent hide mirrors the constructivist graphics elsewhere, an added-value extra for a collection which has set the bar for London menswear designers this season.

Review written by Lee Clatworthy (@TeamChutzpah) for Katie Chutzpah blog.

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