John Smedley has almost single handedly kept the torch alight for British manufacturing, remaining faithful to UK craftsmanship and manufacture, and his name has become a byword for quality knitwear. In fact a Smedley knit is essential ammunition in the modern man's sartorial arsenal.
Inspired by sea scapes and muted coast lines it was a very English summer collection. Held in a beautifully sparse space on Endell street the collection was more like an art instillation. Boys stood grouped on seperate white stages, and dramatic lighting threw interesting shadows behind the boys simple silhouettes. Everything you'd expect from a Smedley presentation; cashmere long sleeve polos, fine hooded jumpers and short sleeve round knecks in gentle blues and greys.
However, horizontal stripes and sunset ombre cardigans were a refreshing and welcome addition to the Smedley family. As were the cashmere tracksuits (we'll all be in all full shell suit tracksuits by the end of the year if LCM is anything to go by). Smedley proved he could keep up with the cool kids as models rocked Grandad style socks and Birkenstocks.
The model cast consisted of classic, British beauties matching the collection nicely, including Adam Rawcliffe at Established Models, who was featured in our last issue. The boys tried to subtly natter as guests strolled in and about them. Two couldn't stop fiddling with their one prop, a lonely wooden chair and had to stiffle laughter as it clattered to the floor, and buyers stopped to take in the scene. Girls and boys stood resplendent in knits between clothing rails giggled quietly as photographers snapped away.
Ground breaking - no. But then that's never been the Smedley bag. The Collection was desirable, wearable and supremely classic.
Photography by Sophie Mayanne.
Words by Nellie Eden.