Paul Smith's runway menswear presentation, as ever, is safely tucked into the Paris schedule, over a week away. So his contribution to London Collections: Men takes the form of a simple statement, rather than a show. In previous seasons, that's ranged from unveiling a single shoe design (in a characteristically Smith-like rainbow of pastels) to challenging how we think of the formal suit, by putting his travel tailoring onto acrobats and gymnasts.
This time round, spinning acrobatics were replaced by a team of stunt cyclists, putting Smith's latest travel suit – an unlined merino, woven by Loro Piana in a range of cloudy-coloured checks – through its paces on a set made of giant Rietveld-esque chairs.
As always, Smith managed to conjure a witty spectacle out of a straightforward point about the functionality which should lie at the heart of menswear design. And it was a logical connection to make, given the designer's own much-documented passion for cycling (he was a keen racer, until a childhood accident forced him to stop). But it was arguably too close to last season's high-impact gymnastics piece to make a real point of difference. That's where the show in Paris, hopefully, will come into its own.