African silhouettes and tech fabrics combine in designer George Alvin's debut collection, Flavours of Light
Essex-boy George Alvin commonly goes by the name Brack or Brack-Man. He turned his back on a successful acting career that saw him play in the West End and steal sweets from Barry in Eastenders to instead pursue a career in design. With a year’s experience of working at New Power Studio, he is now in his final year of a BA at London College of Fashion and on the brink of launching his own eponymous menswear label. He is inspired by innovative textiles and simple, clean design and has worked with Dazed’s own Elizabeth Fraser-Bell, who styled his lookbook. Talking to Dazed Digital Alvin aka Brack talked us through his brand, thoughts on today’s menswear and his dad's wardrobe.
Dazed Digital: Where does the name Brack-Man come from?
George Alvin: It was a nickname for me from one of my clever friends. He saw my first collection I did at college and it was based around Cubism and had really boxy shapes. He said it reminded him of a Georges Braque’s painting – it is really weird. It is really strange, I never really think about it, but I have had the name for years and people call me Brack or Brack-Man now.
Dazed Digital: How did you get into menswear design?
George Alvin: I always had this interest in fashion because my dad has always had really lovely taste. I used to look at his clothes and try them on and look at things like the seams and cut from a really young age. So, it was natural that I wanted to do menswear. When I dropped out of 6th form college and spent a year working at Gap in Romford I applied to do fashion at Thurrock College. It was a womenswear course at the time so they wrote to the exam board and said, 'would you mind if this guy does menswear' and it all went from there, to be honest. Then, I made a few t-shirts and sold them, went to uni and started working on this collection as part of third year BA. I thought it would be a good opportunity to launch this as the debut collection for the label.
Dazed Digital: Brack-Man combines techno fabrics with utilitarian design, is this something of particular interest to you?
George Alvin: I’ve always been interested in keeping things simple, the use of innovation in textiles and future fabrics. I am about function, wearability and simplicity and so the collection is quite simple and boxy with the main emphasis on the fabric. It all started off with a Stone Island jacket which is a light reflective. I have always been interested in Stone Island and their innovation through textiles − they do a lot of trials and testing at their HQ in Milan − and so I wanted to look into that myself. I want people to be able to wear my garments on any occasion, whether it be smart, or casual, or even sports related, it is really important to emphasise that in the collection is wearable. Especially, I find, being at uni, a lot of the designers' fashion is quite unwearable. We, as men, should wear garments that are functional and have a touch of luxury with nice details.
Photography Rowan Corr
Styling Elizabeth Fraser-Bell
Art Direction Max Parsons
Hair Yumi Nakada
Models O'Shea at Select, Axel Gillot and Rokas Zilionis at Elite
Styling Assistant Shawana Grosvenor