A collection of two halves from Lou Dalton for Spring Summer 12, working with a palette of predominantly jet black and crisp bright white. Opening with a series of beautifully tailored pieces that combined a sense of very English heritage, both British youth culture and traditional tailoring. Set to a soundtrack by Horse Meat Disco's Jim Stanton, it was Britain’s post industrial music scene of the mid 80s, and the political influence of that period that was the main inspiration for the collection. Opening with black bomber jacket styled Harringtons with zipped details, zipped detail shirts and tiny short shorts in nylon, the feel was darker and moodier to begin with with but with a defined sexuality. A black linen hooded parka cemented that industrial feeling along with cargo pocket detailing and high collars.
As the show progressed hints of glamour came through in full shimmering panelled t-shirts with crystal beading, layered under the moodier feeling garments. Then onto a series of vibrant white pieces, with similar shapes and ideas but given a new take in the new colour way. A sand coloured voluminous high collar jacket also made an appearance adding something new to the collection, along with a cargo pocket navy drill cotton work shirt, tailored sports coats and a donkey jacket shoulder detail jacket with wide open front pockets. Adding a touch of fun was a short trouser romper suit in navy, again adding that refined sexuality we had seen earlier on.
Dazed Digital: Where were you getting the inspirations from this season? Lou Dalton: I always stick to the same things really, working class heroes and that kind of thing. This season it was really about the miners strike during the 80s and the Pitman Painters, we actually used Robert Clarke this season to do the invitation illustration.
DD: The was also an 80s industrial scene element to it as well perhaps? Lou Dalton: Yes definitely, when I briefed Jim Stanton who did the shows soundtrack I asked him what he would have been listening to in around 1984-86. At first we wanted to go for Fun Boy 3 but Prada actually used that so we couldn't. We ended up with Heaven 17 Let Me go and a couple of others.
DD: What made you want to look back at that industrial era? Lou Dalton: It was very much the youth culture that was around during that period in the 80s so it all toed together. And it was a great look. However I wanted to keep a very clean silhouette, so there wasn't too much looking back to the 80s.
DD: What about the crystallisation? Lou Dalton: That was really about the idea of the swan and the duckling. A sense of beauty coming out of something turbulent and quite coarse.
DD: And the zip detailing? Lou Dalton: Well that is just an ongoing thing for me. I'm obsessed with a YKK and a RiRi zip. Its a good strong continuation from last season and something that I really love the aesthetic of.