The two most iconic fashion clans of the United Kingdom did battle on the Comme des Garçon catwalk on Friday afternoon. Designer Rei Kawakubo pitched the refined aristocratic gentleman against the youthful rebellious punk.
Each side used its most powerful sartorial weapons to battle the other. Classic horse and hound printed suiting and precision tailoring went up against vibrant plaids and DYI silver snap embellishments.
Both sides struggled to get the upper hand. The aforementioned hunter print suits came with an assortment of slits with the punk plaids breaking through from underneath, unwilling to be ignored. Dandy redingote coats were disrupted by lines, both diagonal and undulating, that were highlighted by those thick three-dimensional metal buttons.
The juxtaposition of the two factions was also explored in the way the designer layered her ensembles. The teared leveling of garments, that saw long asymmetrical versions of a man's business shirt worn with a tailored dinner jacket or a traditional checked suit, cut with shorts instead of pants, transfigured the familiar into something divergent and desirable.
But in this standoff of fashion codes the clear winner was the brand. By bringing together such strong prints, silhouettes, and some seriously impressive day glow yellow punky pompadours, Kawakubo was able to harness the power of each point of view and make the resulting collection that much more potent.