Let's hear it for the boys: menswear charms London

Wed Feb 22, 2012 1:42pm EST
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By Ethan Bilby

LONDON (Reuters) - Menswear was the focus of autumn/winter 2012 London Fashion Week Wednesday with designers of classic Savile Row suits and avant garde Fashion East casual wear saying that London was still a synonym for quality in men's clothing.

London's Savile Row is world-renowned for its tradition of bespoke classic menswear pieces and quality construction, and Gieves and Hawkes design director Barry Tulip told Reuters that his collection stayed true to tradition whilst updating it for this season.

"The most important thing about this collection is that we've not reinvented the wheel, we've kept it very classic. We've just updated it to make it relevant for today's customer."

Exotic luxury blends of cashmere and mink were featured on some of the jackets in the Gieves and Hawkes collection, along with playfully bright geometric printed ties to brighten up the mood in austere times.

"When everybody is depressed as they are now, you have to dream a little bit - for instance we've gone to town with our printed ties taking our inspiration from David Hicks," he said.

Hicks was a well known interior designer in the swinging sixties of London, and Tulip said that the collection featured many other small 1960s elements such as widened lapels and a lowered notch.

Elsewhere in London another Savile Row brand, E. Tautz, sent models down the runway in hand-made woolen tweed and cotton creations in hues of black, charcoal and grey.

Double breasted polo coats, charcoal tweed jackets, and wool tweed zip duffel coats were featured in an elegantly decorated Freemason's hall replete with colorful stain glass windows.   Continued...

A model presents a creation at the Christopher Shannon 2012 Autumn/Winter collection show during London Fashion Week February 22, 2012. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett