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Topman Design Menswear S/S13

Insider Access: London Menswear S/S13 Day One

Dazed Digital's creative director James West on adrenaline and the chance to forge something new

Dazed's team round up each day of London menswear Spring/Summer 13 with their thoughts. At the end of day one, we speak to Dazed Digital's creative director James West...

Dazed Digital: What do you think of the new three day London menswear schedule?
James West:
It's exciting and a new week in the fashion calendar – no-one's sure how it should work yet and that means everything is up for grabs. Paris and Milan are very established in terms of what they do but the format can sometimes be predictable. London has a blank slate, a chance to forge something new.

Dazed Digital: Broadly speaking, there are two camps in London at the moment: classic tailoring and the fearless new generation designers. Can the two co-exist and thrive simultaneously?
James West:
Savile Row obviously has its heritage, and there are a lot of magazines that rest in that ethos. But at the same time, in a city with so much tradition it's only natural to have the opposite too. It's easy to try to put designers into pigeonholes, the problem with that would be it'd also be easy to gloss over people like Lou Dalton who are doing interesting things.

DD: What was your highlight of day one?
James West:
Lou Dalton has really hit her stride, every collection is new and interesting but there's a real voice that carries through. There was a shoulder detail throughout the collection that transformed everything and proved how a simple touch can effect things, as well as making them cohesive.

DD: What are you looking forward to on day two?
James West:
SIBLING, MAN and Katie Eary. MAN, the new talent scheme by Fashion East and Topman, is always a chance to see something fresh and exciting from designers that are not yet able to put on a show themselves. It's in a good location, well produced and talked about – which is important, it's not in a Tesco's car park somewhere. And SIBLING and Katie Eary are a pure shot of adrenaline.