Curated Crowd were invited to Phoebe English’s co-ed for LFWM ‘18.
An Artist, a Chef and a Highwayman.
Phoebe English’s collection is Not Quite Safe for Work.
South London fashion designer Phoebe English marries utilitarian design with deconstructed workwear for her 2018 men’s collection, whilst examining neo-Grecian androgyny in the co-ed’s womenswear collection.
English, a pioneer of slow fashion and a passionate believer in pieces that are built to stand the test of time in both function and style, has created a line full of staple pieces that are not short of imagination and flair.
A signature that ran seamlessly throughout the co-ed was her attention to the neckline of her pieces: structured and severe, the fabric unraveled into a casual and wearable drape that, in the menswear collection recalls the transition from the dishevelment of youth to the burgeoning responsibilities of adulthood. She reconditions men’s uniforms, taking mundane workwear motifs and transforming them into something fresh and exciting.
English’s signature also extends to her womenswear collection, with the ubiquitous drape falling from the structured neck into a layered, Athenian silhouette. The androgyny of some of the more architectural pieces evokes Spartan mythology, with rigid panelling built upon softer silken tailoring. However, it is brought into the 21st century with iridescent cosmetics and opalescent mohicans, creating a Neo-Grecian aesthetic that is both playful and threatening.
English’s co-ed transpired to be a stage for the collision of work versus play, the wearable versus the fantasy. We found the womenswear collection to be a celebration of feminine strength, and an elegance underpinned by a futuristic take on Grecian mythology. Yet it was the menswear collection that stood out. English managed to sew together a myriad of elements that encapsulate the modern male workforce, in a way that both challenges. and accepts, the status quo.
Why We Like It
English has taken typical work attire and unpicked all the conservative stitches. Louche silhouettes, fun detailing and playful uniformity rule her menswear collection for this S/S ‘’18 collection.
What’s The Story
Phoebe English established her home-grown South London brand in 2011 after winning a string of accolades and awards for her final Central Saint Martins collection. She’s a Curated Crowd favourite because of her dedication to sustainable production practices, with pieces that are entirely Made in England “from start to finish, from initial sketch to final stitch.”
What You Should Look At
● Embroidered chainmail fabrics.
● Soft layers that transform into rigid necklines.
● Elegantly dishevelled outerwear
● Carefully considered construction:
● Illusory Paneling: armour effects created from silks
● Sophisticated tailored trousers contrasted against loose drapery.
● Surprising smatterings of colour: mustard yellow and hibiscus pink make a surprise entrance in this atmospheric co-ed.