“Inspired by the spirit of the West” stated simply the show notes at 3.1 Phillip Lim menswear this morning. As the unmistakable whiff of brand new plywood permeated the air, the American designer showed a collection where this starting point was little more than an undercurrent lassoing through the morning air.
Infused to the point of dilution in clean lines and sparse details, it came as a triangle insert on a shirt, or as a silk scarf knotted just so on the neck of a model. In truth, it was more of a Mod mood than a Western one, but had the Wild West gone into the 20th century, that is most definitely what it would have looked like. Fitted but not skinny, the proportions played well into a contemporary wardrobe while signature frontier materials were appropriately chic in their updated versions.
The quasi-carrot shape of trousers was offset by the exaggerated proportions of a muted indigo denim poncho, strikingly lined in white. The windowpane arrangements on a jacket gave a graphic kick. And florals continued to climb along sleeves, confirming that they are indeed a stunning masculine adornment. Elsewhere, if you’re the type on whom the abbreviated trouser length looks good, the Lim versions should definitely go on the season’s shopping list. And indeed, there was plenty to love in this show, from the raw indigo saddle trousers to the oversized bouclé coat, back to the sheer tactile appeal of a lambskin biker jacket and the ever-popular russet pullover with a horse print.
With this solid offering, Lim confirms that when it comes to making a collection that is commercially viable and sound in design, he sure knows his oats.