The Royal College of Art Fashion Menswear MA has educated some of the most exciting menswear designers to launch onto the fashion scene in recent years including Aitor Throup, James Long, Carolyn Massey and Katie Eary. On the 9th of June, 12 young designers will be hoping to follow in their footsteps as they launch their collections at the RCA's graduate fashion show. Here’s a sneak preview of three of the graduating students, all of whom have just been selected for the prestigious ITS 9 competition.
Courtney McWilliams, 24 from Surrey
Courtney's final collection is themed around reinventing key pieces that men, universally, cannot live without. McWilliams has a flair for the eclectic; mixing street-style with luxury materials, masculinity with femininity and quirky with sophisticated. Her main inspiration is based on a fascination with chavs and the collection will feature a range of styles, from bold printed tracksuits adorned with pit-bull terriers to sharp tailoring, using a range of fabrics that includes printed denim, lace and superfine wools. She has worked with designers including Julien Macdonald, Bora Aksu and Michiko Koshino.
Astrid Andersen, 25 from Denmark
Astrid's graduate collection explores Spanish matadors and American hip-hop culture and the similarities within the way of representing masculinity and dominance, sex and power. Attitude and attention to detail are key elements, combining luxury with sportswear by mixing fur, silk and gold zips with lightweight nylon, jersey and rib finishing. Andersen has recently designed a selection of menswear garments for high street store River Island which will be out in June.
Hanna ter Meulen, 24 from the Netherlands
Hanna’s designs have a strong foundation in tailoring but are balanced between formal and casual styles. Her aim is to create strong pieces that are constructed in unusual and new ways that add new dimensions to the traditional items of clothing in a man’s wardrobe. The use of quality fabrics is paramount and includes fine wool, tweeds, cashmere and Egyptian cotton. Fabric manipulations are also very important in the design process to create more depth and texture. Hanna uses smocking and weaving techniques to shape the material in an innovative way, creating a comfortable, flexible cut which shapes to the body.
Photo Credit: Louise Te Poele. Models: Craig @ Models 1 and Kieron @ Cosmic Models
Tickets for the RCA catwalk show on June 9th are available from: www.rca.ac.uk or call 0207 590 4566