New year, new clothes. The AW13 collections are earlier than ever this season, as the second London Collections: Men begins on Monday ahead of Pitti, Milan and Paris, following the success of the capital's AW12 standalone schedule. As designers put the finishing touches to their collections; carry out castings, fittings and hair tests, we go on a series of studio visits to get a feel of what to expect...
Dazed Digital: What was the biggest challenge in putting the collection together?
Lou Dalton: We had such a great response to the SS13 collection that I am constantly looking back over the collection and questioning whether it is as strong as, the challenge to put something out there that is as well received as before is a constant worry...
DD: Favourite advice you've had from someone?
Lou Dalton: My father always told me that I could have or achieve whatever I wanted if I kept my head down and worked hard. I pretty much live by this.
DD: Any tips for staying calm during fashion week?
Lou Dalton: Just write a to do list and stick with it, having all what you have to in front of you can be a little overwhelming however; to have in an order of sorts mentally keeps you on track of what you need to do.
DD: ...Or staying awake when there's so much work to do?
Lou Dalton: Coffee, water and lots of loud upbeat music, preferably a playlist by the fabulousness that is HORSE MEAT DISCO.
DD: What were the first pieces in the collection you designed?
Lou Dalton: The knitwear as this takes the longest to develop, I wanted to catch the rawness of the land in terms of terrain.
DD: What are you most proud of?
Lou Dalton: It's a little to early to say at the moment, I feel a strong connection to it all.
DD: What about the soundtrack?
Lou Dalton: I leave the music in the capable hands of of Jim Stanton, one part of Horse Meat Disco, his taste in music is sublime.
DD: What other shows are you looking forward to seeing?
Lou Dalton: Chris Shannon, James Long and Craig Green. Love the boys.
DD: What's your favourite look on a man?
Lou Dalton: A good shoe / boot, every man should invest in a good shoe, it can help carry the poorest of clothes. In terms of ideal man, I just want whoever wears the clothes to feel special and confident when wearing a bit of Lou Dalton.
DD: Sum up AW13 in three words...
Lou Dalton: Autumn Winter Thirteen.
DD: What difference does fashion make?
Lou Dalton: Fashion allows you to lose yourself, to be creative, to inspire to be inspired. It makes the world are far more colourful and exciting place to be...