16 June 2014

YMC kick started the London Collections: Men this morning with an educational-themed show at The British Library. The grand space seemed humorously at odds with the London brand’s eponymous low-key, casual-cool. We waited nervously to see how YMC might fill the cavernous reception. No need to worry however as the first model stepped out in a dusty pink linen suit and long-line heather cardigan, here we had what seemed a cheeky twist on the archetypal eccentric English Academic’s uniform.

Then the second boy stepped out in shorts and a straw cap, and we began to wonder if he was the lecturer or the lectured. Clearly Fraser Moss had been inspired by the cathedral of knowledge that is The British Library. Moss had delved into the library’s monolithic archives that boast 3,000 year Chinese oracle bones and over 4 million maps. What followed could have been a selection of British school-boys out on a Biology field trip, or our Professor out and about abroad. Colonial style safari jackets were loosened up by oversized silhouettes and gym plimsolls were upgraded to soft khaki and white leather booties. Soft cotton and printed denim sets compromising of drawstring shorts and rain coats in shocking pinks and summer blues abounded. Bue chinese-collared shorts were worn with khaki trousers and sweaters were sweetly tied around waists.

The clothes were butterfly-catcher’s apparel and it was easy to imagine these budding biology students in the long grasses of Hampstead Heath diligently collecting samples and PH levels. It wasn’t all book-worm chic though. Classroom cool got the street wear treatment; old-school PE kit could be found in the matching geometrical tracksuits and school caps got a street-nod as they were reimagined as long-line bucket hats with green plastic eye holes, that rendered the boys bug-like themselves. The high-school and the high street collided. Evidently each had taken a leaf out of one another's text-books. Clever highlights were crinkled raincoats that looked as though they'd been freshly rung out by mum, and optical striped shirts with matching shorts and scarves.

The AMCK boys seemed to rock the show, including BBG sweethearts Joel Mignott and Mac Phiri. The boys were left naturally under-styled and Fraser and his team had cast a motley crew who all looked equally comfortable in the highly wearable designs. The bug-eye bucket hats stole the show however, and Fraser knew it, sending all of the boys out in one for the final walk through. These boys looked about ready for an adventure with Moss as Scout leader, and wherever they were headed, we wanted in.

Photography by Ieva Blazeviciute.
Words by Nellie Eden.

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