Sunday, January 7, 2018

BEAUTY: Clothing--John Alexander Skelton

And here we are with coverage of fashion season!

Up and coming designer John Alexander Skelton (who was awarded the Sarabande scholarship granted by the Lee Alexander McQueen Foundation, and graduated from Central Saint Martin’s with an M.A. in fashion men’s wear in 2016) presented a highly conceptualized and dramatic FW '18-'19 collection at London Fashion Week Men's...just how I like 'em! The British folk traditions of 19th century folk theater, where members of local communities would stage productions to entertain their friends and neighbors, and wassailing, a medieval English pagan ritual performed in apple orchards intended to ensure a good cider apple harvest the following year offered marvelous historical silhouettes in authentically hand-woven wool.

“The sense of community that was held within British folk theatre, in contrast to the lack of community we have now is something that I wanted to reference,” Skelton told Women's Wear Daily. “The performers were often laborers, farmers or very poor people who would get together what they could to make their costumes, so there was a strong DIY element to it.”

Skelton looks to be a designer to watch, perhaps following in the footsteps of other great British designers like McQueen, Westwood, and Galliano who all appreciate and incorporate historical clothing into their designs. I'd love any one of these Victorian waistcoats, Fagin-esque frock coats...or even the entire outfit in the middle photo of the bottom row below (I love the hunter green folklore symbols on the shirt as well as on the backdrop of the entire presentation). In 2016, Skelton told the New York Times, "The British Library is an amazing resource. I love research because you enter different worlds and it’s so enriching. It’s interesting how intertwined textiles has been with politics and social history...There’s a certain rigor about the past which I’m attracted to. But it’s important to know what’s in the past and take that to make something modern. Everything in the past is fodder for inspiration, from the ’90s to the 1790s." I think Lee, Viv, and John approve.

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