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London hailed as "global centre for creativity" as LFW Mens gets underway

Lauretta Roberts
06 January 2018

London Fashion Week Mens was officially opened this morning with chair of the event and editor of British GQ Dylan Jones hailing the capital as the "global centre for creativity".

The three-day event is being positioned as one of creative diversity and discovery as it combines some big name brands with the best of the British high street, streetwear and new talent.

Speaking at the opening event Jones said: "We look forward to starting January 2018 with London Fashion Week Men’s as a celebration of London as a global centre for creativity and innovation. From fashion to art, design, music and popular culture, our international audience use LFWM to experience our city’s melting pot of creative industries and the best of British retail.

"News that growth in the UK menswear market is predicted to outstrip womenswear and reach £16.2bn by 2021, is promising news for our designers and further cements the UK’s importance as a global business destination," he said.

British Fashion Council CEO Caroline Rush added: "The breadth of talent and diversity of our LFWM designers, contributors and collaborators is a testament to the vibrancy and openness of London. This season sees Craig Green, British Designer of the Year at the recent Fashion Awards, present his collection alongside British Emerging Talent Menswear Winner Charles Jeffrey, New Gen recipient Grace Wales Bonner and British heritage brand Belstaff.

"Collaborations this season include the co-curation of the LFWM DiscoveryLAB with GQ Style’s Fashion Director Elgar Johnson and live performances by poet James Massiah, graffiti artist Ben Eine and perfumer Timothy Han," she added. Massiah performed at the opening event at 180 Strand, having written a dedicated poem called Chiswick Church.

The event, which last year celebrated its fifth anniversary, has been hit by a number of big name departures from the schedule such as Vivienne Westwood who has pulled her co-ed catwalk show from the schedule in favour of releasing digital imagery and video for AW18 but a number of initiatives have been introduced to place the emphasis on the discovery aspect of the event.

The main hub at 180 Strand houses the official BFC Show Space as well as the Designer Showrooms, the NEWGEN Pop-Up Showroom as well as the new DiscoveryLAB occupying the West Wing. The creative space is hosting exclusive experiences combining the worlds of fashion, tech, art and performance during the weekend.

Today Tonsure, from designer Malte Flagstad and hailed as one of the most promising menswear brands to emerge from Copenhagen, has filled the space with dynamic projections to create an interactive journey through Manhattan using moving images accompanied by a mix of immersive music and sounds.

Later on in the day Bethany Williams debuts her fashion documentary, storytelling her ground-breaking project with LCF to support the San Patriano project in Italy, teaching textile production skills to a women’s substance abuse rehabilitation project.

On Sunday #COMMUNEPRESENTS by Commune East presents CHEWING THE FAT: The Future forecast of Fashion as a Commune-ity S.T.E.A.M discussion on how the AI landscape will impact how fashion is viewed and consumed. TIMOTHY HAN/EDITION will create an experiential bar with edible perfumes on Monday.

Mintel predicts the menswear market grow by 12.43% between 2016 and 2021 to reach £16.2bn.  

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