Having been inspired by African embroidery and prints for his last collection, Christopher Bailey returned to a more familiar and closer to home muse for A/W12, the English gentleman. Or rather, he explored the happy marriage of two gents, one at home in the offices of the city and the other content roaming the great outdoors. Bailey revelled in the realms of the familiar by revisiting true staples of menswear and mixed them in surprising combinations. From form hugging double breasted tailoring with quilted jackets, leather hunting jackets with fur lined cardigans and thick down parkas over grey flannel suiting.
Traditional codes of tailoring danced and cajoled with country classics throughout. Whilst the palette echoed the environments of its inspiration, from grey urban landcapes seen in concrete wools and English country hues of moss green, umber and brown in tweeds, waxed cotton and velvet. The outerwear mixes and fabric combinations were not the only surprises as Bailey littered the collection with touches that brought the odd wry smile. From beaded fox heads applied to knitwear, flashes of polka dots in shirting and accessories and duck headed umbrellas to name. Even these touches felt decidedly English.