If futurism and nostalgia were two words that could be paired together they would certainly describe Christopher Shannon’s Spring/Summer 2015 offering. Sticking to what he knows best, his collection is streetwear with a theme: this season shifting his attention to ‘emo-culture’ and ‘the spiritual paraphernalia that might be found in a teenager’s bedroom’.
But Shannon’s teenager is not the spotty-faced and greasy-haired kid that you might remember; this teen is much cooler, wearing today’s slouchy proportions and oversized t-shirts with prints reminiscent of younger years. The first selection of looks comprised of ripped up collage prints, similar to the art of the punk era, on boxy long-length t-shirts over basketball shorts. Other interesting prints included a clever play on the positive and negative space of sticker albums through cut out panels lined with colours.
The components of the collection are true to the nineties theme, comprising of bomber jackets, polo shirts in fine-stripe knits and narrow jeans with matching denim jackets. An unexpected piece was the short-shorts playsuit, potentially Shannon’s answer to last season’s tunic trend.
The palette was more muted than it has been throughout Shannon’s career, consisting of darker tones with splashes of raspberry and plum. Colours are instead used as part of the embellishment, with a nostalgic selection of primary colours taped onto sporty sweatshirts and lined with a zip to form unconventional and, in some occasions awkward, pockets.
Thoroughly researched as always, Shannon’s collection has a strong selection of references running throughout. Adrienne Salinger’s 1995 book ‘Teenagers in Their Bedroom’ forms one source for the scrapbook-style screen prints of shapes, cut outs and the designer’s name. Another slightly more obscure reference is Sophie Lee Beresford’s Youtube videos of herself dancing (almost too enthusiastically) around her room - perhaps to thank for the energetic nature of the prints.
It’s already been a successful month for the Liverpool-born designer, having won the inaugural British Fashion Council/GQ Designer Menswear Fund, beating the likes of Richard Nicoll, Lou Dalton, Christopher Raeburn and Patrick Grant. There’s no doubt this collection is a further success for Shannon, creating something with the obscure underpinning he adores whilst still being something that the cool kids he dresses can wear straight from the show.
What Shannon is doing certainly has purpose, making it obvious why the designer is one of the most promising young designers on the London Collections: Men schedule.
Christopher Shannon Menswear Spring/Summer 2015 Looks:
Review: Molly Taylor
Runway Photography: Courtesy of Concrete Projects