Christopher Shannon is one of the London menswear designers celebrating the birth of a three day long men's fashion extravaganza in June - a BFC assertion that the male version of British fashion is finally worth as much attention as the womenswear - but the Liverpudlian designer also have another reason the joyous. Spring Summer 2012 sees him launch Kidda, his new diffusion line.
We had quite a few prints from early collections that we hadn't made available and it seemed a shame to not use them. Also we had a lot of interest from stores who really loved the collections but found the mainline a bit of a hardcore buy
As a continuation of his sportswear-obsessed main line, Kidda and its 'My Heart Goes Bang' titled premiere collection looks closer at what we've come to love Shannon for. As these exclusive Dazed Digital images show, this collection is based around blue and grey colours on jersey fabrics with Shannon's classic CS logo, chain prints and pixelated paisley. We spoke Shannon in an exclusive interview about Kidda, just weeks before his London Fashion Week show in February...
Dazed Digital: What makes Kidda different from the mainline?
Christopher Shannon: Kidda will only be about printed jersey pieces. In order to move the mainline collection forward we are focusing on new techniques, fabrications and finishes, and Kidda give us more space with the brand to develop using jersey staples.
DD: What was the reason for its incarnation?
Christopher Shannon: Quite a few really. Firstly we had quite a few prints from early collections that we hadn't made available and it seemed a shame to not use them. Also we had a lot of interest from stores who really loved the collections but found the mainline a bit of a hardcore buy. Also I didn't want to shoehorn a print into the mainline collection but still wanted to work on printed pieces.
There were more reasons to do it than not. Plus it's nice to do collaborations but we wanted to add another line that is totally our own, even though its more work we can do exactly what we want within it and in how we present the work.
DD: The title, My Heart Goes Bang, what does it refer to?
Christopher Shannon: It's the name of an old Dead Or Alive song, I wanted the collection to have a bit of impact and feel quite upbeat and straightforward, just seemed like a nice name. Todd Taylor who we found when we were streetcasting has since moved on to being signed by international agencies is a bit of a Shannon poster boy, I suppose in reference to the way everyone always responds to him.
DD: What was the inspiration behind the S/S12 Kidda collection?
Christopher Shannon: Completely archive, to keep it really simple and graphic and for the fabrics and the prints to be well done. That was it.
DD: Is there a signature piece from the collection? A signature print?
Christopher Shannon: I think they all are. We've just sampled Kidda A/W 12 and it's moved on already, I love working within boundaries and developing ideas that are quite personal to the label.
DD: Can you say something about what we can expect from the upcoming A/W12 show?
Christopher Shannon: Hmm not really, we still have loads of pieces coming in to the studio and we are editing all the time. I feel like its a definite progression in where I want to go, it's a tiny bit moodier. Not like all pouts and smokey eyes, just a little more down tempo.
Photos by Clare Shilland. The Kidda range will be available at ASOS from end of February, 2012