Craig Green Flies The Flag at London Collections: Men SS17

Craig Green reimagines the Trench coat for SS17
Craig Green, quite easily the most exciting fashion happening in London menswear at this very moment. In three short years of existence, Craig Green's highly poetic and elevated shows have quickly risen to the forefront of everybody's radar. Yet with little change. It's one of the many reasons that last month resulted in him scooping up the GQ/BFC Menswear Designer Fund, previously won by Christopher Shannon and Patrick Grant's E.Tautz label. It's also important to recognise that prior to being nominated for the prestigious prize, Green had never used a business plan, "before this process, we had never even written a business plan" and is yet to use a credit card to help fund his namesake brand. In fact he's proud to acknowledge it, speaking in an interview with Tim Blanks (Business of Fashion) Green mentions "We have no investment, no credit cards, no overdraft and no backers." And why shouldn't he be proud? His effort, determination and understanding of the needs one has to grow a small business over the last eight collections clearly proved why Green was the worthy recipient of the fund. Not to forget his maturity. For the reasonably shy person Craig Green is, he's never been one to forget to mention the help he receives from his rather small team on a daily basis - I believe they were just glad to now not have to sit on boxes when they come into work each day, Craig included.

Craig Green flying the flags for Great Britain

Craig has spoken before about his childhood upbringing, a member of the boy scouts, his mum one of the leaders. He jokes "It's a very North London thing, I guess." Growing up around art and craft, things touched by human hands has influenced everything he's done so far in his career - his father himself was a carpenter. "We've been looking at Scout scarves and boyhood adventure" Green mentioned ahead of his Spring/Summer 2017 collection on Friday, the opening day of LC:M. His latest offering seen Green return to complex print and intricate pattern. A saturated colour palette. Influenced by Moroccan bedsheets, Indian draping, flags and scout scarves - that symbolism evoked around "belonging" to something he developed as he continued along his ever so dreamy journey. Interested in looking at the simplest of ways of making clothes, he began draping and tying scarves around models' bodies, leaving them to hang down past their legs. Craig's lifelong affair with community, workwear and uniform, more specifically the rugby kit was also present. "There's definitely a sports feeling" the designer explained afterwards, "we started with rugby tops and we cut them up and put them back together." That dissected aesthetic ran throughout, most relevant perhaps in the Trench coats (top image) and what struck me was, Craig Green almost reinvented a garment that hasn't really changed at all since it's introduction roughly one-hundred and thirty-seven years ago by Thomas Burberry. A garment so heavily recognised as a military piece of clothing, Craig's version was romanticised and wildly impulsive and sure to be a hit in terms of selling. Open backs challenged masculinity, but are sure to be a hit with his female customer base. As like with previous garments, there may even be the option to have the exact runway piece or a more commercialised, safer option - like with the loose ties of seasons' past. On a final note, with his challenging, courages desire, yet without the need to reinvent every season (although this season had changed considerably from the last) and now with a hefty cash injection, Craig Green isn't disappearing out of our line of sight anytime soon.








Images courtesy of Dazed Digital and Vogue Runway
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