Burberry Prorsum Menswear Spring Summer 2014 London
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If there was ever a harbinger of LCM’s soaring global status, it was the return of Burberry Prorsum’s menswear show on home soil. With typical grandeur, the show was set in a magnificent marquee in Kensington Gardens, reached via a muddy path that was in unison with the collection’s more quaint, countryside feel. Gone were the metropolitan bikers and heavy synthetic detail; it was all about comfortable, relaxed ensembles with added quirks and kooky details. It was a consciously British detour, a tribute to Alan Bennett and David Hockney and the enhanced presence of their and Bailey’s home county, Yorkshire.

From a trench-clad cosmopolitan, the Burberry man reappeared as a school boy, perhaps one of Bennett’s History Boys, only with a taste for kooky glasses and polka dot scarves. Against the high-tech aesthetic that fueled the brand’s global domination, the iconic trench was replaced by brightly coloured waterproofs and slouchy cashmere coats. What stood out most, however, was the depth of colour, straight out of of Hockney’s RA paintings of the English countryside: undiluted, solid shades of red, green and yellow, which popped up in every ensemble, be it as shoes, knits or soft leather string bags. Adding enough oomph for a show-worthy display, Bailey, it was clear, still designed with wearability in mind, instilling a neutral base in every look, against which the colours sang. It was clever, discreetly luxurious and, in true British fashion, charmingly witty.

While the switch to London has not been confirmed as permanent, it was more than a treat of a show, complete with thematic village green after-show drinks and live music. Everything fell so coherently in place, almost whispering how much Britishness is in the brand’s DNA.

- Maria Dimitrova

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