1. by Lou Stoppard .

    Peter Pilotto at Pitti Immagine W

    Last night saw the Peter Pilotto presentation and installation at the regal Palazzo Borghese. Guests were greeted with an incredible feast, evoking a sense of renaissance Italian luxury, where rival families - the Medicis, the Pazzis and the Salviatis - sought to prove their worth and flaunt their wares. Very apt then! The mixture of swelling crowd and sweltering heat may have slightly undermined the evening's elegant, luxurious theme - but despite the sauna-like conditions (poor models!), the duo's collection still shone. Well how could it have not done?

    Their signature eye-popping colours and nifty 3D prints were supported by rooms carpeted, upholstered and generally adorned with Pilotto visuals – a real print explosion.

    The innovation in this collection came from the set up. The duo told me during the presentation that they'd enjoyed being able to show the 'process' behind their work. They were referring to the large screens on display showing a hypnotizing print generator created by art director Jonny Lu. Dubbed 'a digital kaleidoscope', the technology forms the basis for the majority of the duo's fabric prints - this season shown in two different camps, one angular and geometric, the other softer and swirling, inspired by illuminated manuscripts of the sixteenth century and incorporating celtic and medieval motifs. 

    Aside from the unique mode of presentation the meat and bones of this collection was largely business as usual. The duo's interest in beading and embroidery hung over from last season, and their focus on commercial wearable pieces continued. The pair opted for a savvy selection of shapes - from itsy bitsy minis for their younger shoppers to smart shirts for their working-woman - ensuring that no customer base would go untapped. A real highlight was a sweet Prada-esque drop-waisted kilt dress.

    In such a theatrical setting, when surrounded by ancient painted ceilings - the history of the Palazzo Borghese dates back to 1400 - oversized chandeliers and headache-inducing printed carpets and hangings it would be easy to call this collection fussy or overdone. But strip away the drama and what you have here is a series of impeccably designed individual pieces that will cement Peter Pilotto's status as the brand that real women will always want to wear.

  2. by Lou Stoppard .

    Pitti Menswear S/S 2013 - We're live from Pitti Immagine Uomo

    Today I touched down in a painfully hot Florence (complaints about the weather have actually managed to surpass comments on the clothes amongst sweltering attendees!) to check out the goodies on offer at this year's Pitti party. After a charming flight - sat next to the lovely Christopher Raeburn - I headed over to the Pitti palace where in one quick lap I discovered a stall which puts an end to all existing male summer footwear dramas (sandals? surely not? brogues? what about socks?). The solution? These espadrilles-cum-embroidered-slippers from Italian brand Manedbi. Productive!

    Other highlights from the day include a beautiful presentation from jewellery talent Delfina Delettrez - so surreal it could give old Schiap a run for her money - as well as Valentino's S/S 2013 menswear offering (full review up shortly). I also popped into the unashamedly opulent Peter Pilotto womenswear presentation, where I was greeted with not just some natty fashion but also a banquet that would make a Tudor monarch proud.

    Already I'm struck by the overwhelming sense of luxury at this year’s Pitti. Maybe it’s just more obvious when directly contrasted with the chirpy make-do-and-mend ethos displayed in London – where no one bats an eyelid at a frayed hem or showroom-cum-warehouse setting – but it seems that Italy wants to make a real statement with its fashion. And what’s the final message? Raw talent or just money and power?


    1. Ioanna
      14:37 17 Jul 2012
      I love some men's fashion. Lukus (my huasnbd) has really develop his own sense of style and I am completely inspired by it.... Plus I have been known to borrow certain pieces for my own outfit styling. Shoot your brother--- it'll be fun!
  3. by Lou Stoppard .

    London Collections: Men - all the reportage you need!

    As the fashion pack of Britain pack away their Sunday best, revisit all the action from the weekend's inaugural London menswear shows by heading over to our Collections pages. We've got exclusive reports from author of Modern Menswear Hywel Davies and hot-off-the-runway catwalk images, courtesy of NOWFASHION. Today, we've posted new reviews of Margaret Howell, Meadham Kirchhoff, Richard Nicoll and Omar Kashoura.

    For your immediate menswear fix, check out these 'skeletons in the closet' from T. Lipop's Fashion East Installation. Adorable! But really - who would be ashamed to have these great looks in their wardrobe?

  4. by Lou Stoppard .

    NEWGEN sponsorship for S/S 2013

    Today saw the announcement of which bright young things will be receiving BFC NEWGEN sponsorship for London Fashion Week's coming S/S shows. Top of the pile are Simone Rocha, J.W. Anderson and Michael van der Ham, all of whom received catwalk sponsorship. A beaming Simone told us that she hadn't even been aware that only three designers were set to receive the coveted catwalk funding - so a happy, if surprising, day all round then! Also expecting a forthcoming pay-packet are Christopher Raeburn, J.JS Lee, Lucas Nascimento, Marques'Almeida, Nasir Mazhar and Sister by Sibling, all of whom received presentation sponsorship. Finally, recipients of the exhibition sponsorship are Palmer//Harding, Huishan Zhang, Lim Cooper and Sophia Webster. One of the stars of the last Central Saint Martins MA show, knitwear talent Lim Cooper in particular is on our one-to-watch list. All in all, the announcement really helped hammer home what exciting young talent we currently have on our turf! Congratulations one and all!

    A make-or-break financial support for many budding designers, NEWGEN has been providing the money behind the magic since 1993. Previous beneficiaries include Alexander McQueen, Giles Deacon, Christopher Kane and Marios Schwab. For a handy visual history of some of NEWGEN's finest moments, revisit NEWGEN//TEN, Nick Knight's glorious fashion film created to celebrate the ten year anniversary of Topshop's relationship with the NEWGEN scheme.

  5. by Lou Stoppard .

    An impressive showing at Fashion East's Menswear Installations

    Sometimes fashion works best when it's driven by a simple idea. In a season where maximalism has ruled the roost, some collections have suffered from over-enthusiasm; too many ideas and references fighting for space on the runway. The best showings have been the ones where this fun and frivolity has been streamlined into a concise and considered idea, which when done at its best (read: Shaun Sampson) has managed to move a designer forward without changing or jeopardising their core aesthetic.

    The newbies on show have demonstrated a particularly impressive level of skill and restraint. This was shown most clearly at the MAN collection - noted far and wide as a stellar offering - mostly due to the fact that Sampson, Agi and Sam and Astrid Anderson all used the opportunity of a heavily-hyped runway to pinpoint their identity and focus their vision.

    A similarly strong showcase was seen across town at the Fashion East Installations, held at the luxurious Carlton Gardens. Particularly notable was recent Central Saint Martins grad Craig Green, who, in his own words, built a collection around 'simplicity', focusing on crafty DIY techniques, unusual finishings and clean neutral colours. This was menswear innovation at its best, no puffery of unnecessary bells and whistles or pointless embellishment, but beautiful, clever clothes that made their point without having to shout. Stand out items from the fifteen pieces on offer include his crinkle-wash raw-cut calico shirts, skillfully finished with anti-fray industrial paint, and his mohair and yarn knitted jumpers accessorised with rubber-dipped sleeves (genius). There was true love put into this collection, shown in everything from the hidden internal frills on shirt hemlines to the perfectly punched out button holes, ensuring that these clothes are gifts that will keep on giving with every wear. Not content with impressing on his own turf, Green's talent also found its place on the runway thanks to a continued headwear collaboration with Christopher Shannon - we first saw Green's skills at Shannon’s S/S 2012 runway show in a series of eye-catching coloured combs. This season, Green turned his hand to creating scarecrow-cum-Morris-dancer fringed hats, to compliment the folksy looks on display. All in all, an impressive offering throughout. The future’s looking great for Green.

  6. by Lou Stoppard .

    London Menswear shows - more reports

    The third and final day of London's inaugural menswear shows kicked off this morning with some lacy looks by JW. Anderson! We're keeping you up to date on all the action, thanks to speedy photography from the team at NOWFASHION, and informed reporting from editor of Modern Menswear Hywel Davies. Today, we've posted brand new reviews of Jonathan Saunders, MAN and Katie Eary, as well as imagery from last night's much anticipated Thom Browne showing.

    To wet your appetite here's some close up shots of Saundery goodness - head over to our Collections pages to see more.

  7. by Lou Stoppard .

    More reports!

    Two very different reports on two very different collections! Hywel Davies summarises all the eccentric action at Martine Rose, and the contrasting considered minimalism at Lee Roach.

    Read all about in on our Collections pages and catch all the latest imagery - inlcuding photos from Christopher Shannon, Matthew Miller and James Long - courtesy of NOWFASHION.

  8. by Lou Stoppard .

    London Menswear Spring/Summer 2013: Forever young

    Day two of the inaugural London menswear collections and the buzzword is still youth. There is an air of revolution and urgency about the clothing on offer - as if each and every item on show is sticking two fingers up at traditional notions of how 'proper' men should dress. From the sportswear-meets-skater-chic styling, to the influx of raw edges, neon colours, and pair upon pair of shorts, London menswear is proving to be the city where men don't grow up. Contrast that with the austere suiting and booting that dominated the A/W runways of Milan's menswear giants, and it's easy to see why London's focus on fun is thriving.

    Our designers are positioning themselves as the joyful, colourful - and most of all talented - enfants terribles of menswear. If Paris' sleek menswear symbolises the man you bring home to meet your parents, and Milan - with its trusty tailoring - is the man you marry, London is the beautiful, if ill-advised, boyfriend who got you into all kinds of unforgettable youthful scrapes.

    The insuppressible juvenile energy we're seeing has nothing to do with the fact that the clothes are being shown on a virgin schedule - no, this playful, rebellious tone has been deliberatly culivated by the designers who are showcasing. Similar themes have popped up from runway to runway, from West Coast ease at Topman, Shaun Sampson and Katie Eary to the festival of colours at Sibling and Fashion East's Kit Neale. Elsewhere Christopher Shannon turned to hedonistic gap-yah backpackers (alongside English folklore) to offer up a strong showing of rag-doll-cum-scarecrow looks. Finally, not one to take his finger far from the pulse of the zeitgeist, Maarten Van Der Horst also went youth-happy, taking inspiration from teenage delinquents and heavy metal heads. Naughty.

  9. by Lou Stoppard .

    London Menswear Spring/Summer 2013: A patriotic display for day one.

    London's first menswear shows kicked off with more of a whimper than a bang, thanks to a rather underwhelming first day schedule (save from a few highlights thanks to Lou Dalton, Martine Rose and a coming show from Spencer Hart). All in all the offerings so far have been a patriotic fusion of classic British tailoring and current cultural hurrahs. The Olympic-fever that's been simmering on the recent London runways has come into its stride. The athletic tone was set from the off by Dalton, who provided neon, aertex and trainers alongside her tailoring. Topman really ran (pardon the pun) with the sports day theme  - even if their shownotes dubbed this an exploration of eighties America - showing numbered jerseys with reworked Prince of Wales check, nodding to the Jubilee as well as the Olympics. Patriotic!

    Stay tuned to our Collections pages for more coverage!

  10. by Lou Stoppard .

    London Menswear Spring/Summer 2013 - our coverage begins!

    From tailoring talent on Savile Row to rebellious youth groups offering up subversive sartorial statements, London's been the nucleus of menswear innovation for years. The mods and rockers (now classic international reference points) even coined their styles on our turf - and clashed on our beaches - so it's only fair that finally, in 2012, London men join the fashion map.

    Author of 'Modern Menswear' Hywel Davies is our eyes and ears, posting candid reviews alongside live imagery from NOWFASHION. Pictures are already in for Lou Dalton and Hackett. See all the action now!

  11. by Lou Stoppard .

    Congratulations Atsuko Kudo!

    Our favourite latex expert Atsuko Kudo has fought off the competition - whip at the ready - and emerged victorious at this year's European Fetish Awards. She was honoured with a very well-deserved Special Award to honour the ways in which her brand is 'opening doors for the whole latex industry with its amazing work in high fashion'. We at SHOWstudio have had a wonderful time collaborating with AK recently as part of our Selling Sex season, including displaying Atsuko's famous Armour for Prostitutes in our Shop space. Fans of her latex masterpieces can get an immediate Atsuko-fix right now on our site by checking out the newly-released process film documenting the Dressing For Pleasure LiveStudio.

    Congratulations Atsuko and Simon - we couldn't be more proud!

  12. by Lou Stoppard .

    The Graduates

    Last night saw the gala finale of this year's Graduate Fashion Week. It's the twenty-one year anniversary of the event, very apt given that most students are twenty-one themselves when they're spat out of the education system into the big, bright world of fashion - so why not celebrate that with a huge catwalk show at the cavernous Earls Court and a judging panel of industry stalwarts including Suzy Menkes, Caroline Burstein and John Rocha?

    This year's showcase celebrated all faculties of fashion - including marketing, business, stand design (glamorous!) and media. The biggest excitement (and the best prizes) came with the fashion designers - who flaunted their wares in a series of catwalk showcases. Fittingly, given that this generation has been raised on Topshop neons, Patricia Field's more-is-more styling and teen-pop colour-popping, nearly all of the collections shunned the current 'adult' trend for minimalism - save for one rather lovely ode to Theyskens Theory by Rochester's Emma Beaumont - instead opting for bold prints, beads, buttons and embellishments. The effects of this visual festival ranged from the good - as with the work of Mancunian knitwear student Jousianne Propp, who's technicoloured fringed yarns cemented Britain's status as the mothership of talented young knitters - the bad and the ugly, but certainly made for entertaining viewing.

    The overall winner, Bath Spa's Chloe Jones - who's treated to a handy little pay packet of £20,000 (who said students are poor?) - jumped on the Olympic bandwagon, showing off a grey-heavy run of floaty printed maxis topped off with over-sized hoodies, accentuated with some nifty hooping. This was sports day meets prom night, perhaps a slightly tired concept given the rush of sport-luxe fashions on the runways - Jonathan Saunders, Roksanda Ilinicic and Stella McCartney all pushed the trend - but nevertheless, in terms of craftsmanship, a beautifully turned out showcase.

    The menswear at this year's showing was particularly strong. And while, as ever, it was the womenswear collections that garnered the loudest gasps and the biggest gongs, the printing and cutting prowess of talents such as Riona Horrox (who was noted with the judges' Menswear Award) shone. Particularly impressive was Emily Edge from Northumbria. Her impeccably tailored (and uber camp) space cowboys may have been overlooked for the top-prize by the judging panel but will open many a door on the burgeoning London menswear scene.

    Other stars included womenswear designer Amelia Smith, whose Matryoshka-esque lampshade skirts could give judge Mary Katrantzou a run for her money, and Amsterdam import Yvonne Kwok who offered up an enjoyable platter of cartoonistic pompoms and pleats

    All in all, at least for this year, the kids are alright.

  13. by Lou Stoppard .

    Ellie Grace Cumming's Fashion Fetish film is now live

    Today's Fashion Fetish film comes from stylist Ellie Grace Cumming, who collaborates with filmmaker Sarah Piantadosi to explore Triciphilia; the partialism in which one becomes sexually aroused by human hair. Citing references as broad as Larry Clark, Sinead O'Connor, Nick Knight's 'Skinhead' book and even Sigmund Freud - who argued that the cutting of women's long hair by men could represent castration, giving the cutter a sense of sexual dominance - Cumming sought to explore hair fetishism from a female perspective, offering a startling vision of a woman shaving her own head. She says of the film, 'I wanted to look at the fetish of hair and what it meant for women, and what it would feel like for a girl to cut and shave her own hair off and to make a film looking at the act, but in an elegant and beautiful way, taking it away from the seedy websites where people pay to watch it. I wanted to look at it as rebellious, punk act, and explore the ways that it can be a beautiful process. If a woman cuts off her own hair, is it a rejection of her own sexuality, or a rejection of the label of how sexuality is supposed to 'look'?' 

    Watch model Sardé Hardie go bald gracefully now!


  14. by Lou Stoppard .

    SHOWstudio Tumblr - new features launched

    SHOWstudio's Tumblr is boasting an array of exciting new features for your viewing pleasure! Visit Tumblr now to see our newly enlarged videos and images, alongside a natty new feature that lets you view photographs at full browser size. You can also now explore posts by tag - a simple and convenient method of perusing our archive of reference imagery from contributors such as Gareth Pugh, Mary Katrantzou and Judy Blame. Our Tumblr is also your go-to stop for candid - and often unedited - shots straight from Nick Knight's camera, including his daily Instragam updates.

    Don't miss out on the SHOWstudio's Tumblr, an amazing visual resource, which gives viewers unprecedented access to the images which have inspired and informed the work of many of our most acclaimed contributors. You'll have access to some of Knight's own personal archives as well as a beautiful display of our past guest Tumblr curations by creatives including Simon Foxton, Anna Trevelyan and Rei Nadal.

    Follow SHOWstudio on Tumblr now.

  15. by Lou Stoppard .

    When in Cannes...

    Offering a pleasant antidote to the the reams of red-carpet shots from Cannes, Nick Knight's been documenting the gorgeous scenery and sunshine that he encountered while sojourning in the film capital. Enjoy some envy-inducing Hockney-esque water shots...

    For more action straight from Nick's lens follow him on Instagram - @showstudio_nick_knight - or tune into the SHOWstudio Twitter and Tumblr.

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