Taking the look he has been developing and evolving over the past few seasons and adding in a more narrative edge, Christopher Shannon presented a forward feeling and quite personal collection for Autumn Winter. Described by himself as 'intuitive', the collection took in references that went out of a fashion context and into a more style led one, including street photography from around the world. Although the signature touches were still very much there, patchwork, nylon pieces, blues, greys and patent highlights, new additions made their way in. Black, a colour not really seen before in the label, was definitely evident and dropped in to good effect. Simpler pieces including a grey pique pocket T and cleanly detailed knits added a refined touch.
Dazed Digital: What led this collection for you?
Christopher Shannon: Our sales have picked up quite a bit over the last two seasons and that kind of starts to dictate you a little bit. This collection for me was really about reacting against that and not wanting to see a collection in that way. When you start to sell things the buyers want you to do sell-able pieces, but in general in fashion at the moment I don’t think there is a concept of what sell-able pieces are. The people that we sell to are quite high end fashion stores, its not about selling to as many people as possible. I just knew that I had to do something that I wanted to do and not be guided by this idea of what will and will not sell.
DD: So how did that translate into how you designed?
Christopher Shannon: Well, not to sound like an idiot, I kind of feel like this was a collection that was just really intuitive. I made the pieces I wanted to make and included the references I wanted to include. Its hard because I think people see it as a sportswear and Northern thing, but obviously that's not really where I get my references from.
DD: So where were you looking?
Christopher Shannon: I was looking at a lot of the Pieter Hugo books. He is a photographer that created some amazing street style photographs in Nigeria, amongst other places. That's where a lot of the ideas for the ruffles came from actually. Also at a photographer called Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen and her book 'Byker Revisited'.
DD: How did that influence the designs?
Christopher Shannon: Well it turned me onto multiculturalism a lot. Obviously that is something that we see all around us every day but it really made me think about it. Also I was inspired by the fact that, actually when I was watching documentaries of different cultures internationally, that even in the jungle for instance you would see someone wearing a Nike jacket or an Adidas top. There is just so much cheap sportswear out there its almost like it is polluting the planet. It wasn't that I was trying to make a statement about that, it just sort of sliced through the collection.