Ahead of the menswear AW13 collections kicking off in London, we pay a visit to Neale's studio to pre-empt the collection
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?
Kit Neale: Christmas. It's very inconvenient.
DD: Favourite advice you've had from someone?
Kit Neale: 'Be the king of the world, not the king of Shoreditch'.
DD: Any tips for staying calm during fashion week?
Kit Neale: Drink lots of gin, neat.
DD: ...Or staying awake when there's so much work to do?
Kit Neale: Take lots of ginseng.
DD: What were the first pieces in the collection you designed?
Kit Neale: We always start with the prints. We do some sketches of designs, but they're often dropped. When we get the fabrics back and we start from scratch.
DD: What are you most proud of?
Kit Neale: Getting it done.
DD: What about the soundtrack?
Kit Neale: It's a clash between The Fall and Stravinsky's 'Rite of Spring'.
DD: What other shows are you looking forward to seeing?
Kit Neale: MAN, a very biased choice as I'm in the Fashion East bosom but it's always a highlight! Sadly, it clashes with my presentation so I won't make it. I can't wait to see what Craig Green presents, I love his work.
DD: What's your favourite look on a man?
Kit Neale: His own look, not one dictated for him.
DD: Who embodies the spirit of your collection?
Kit Neale: Michael Clark is this season's muse.
DD: Sum up AW13 in three words…
Kit Neale: Greasy, muppets, trippy.
DD: What difference does fashion make?
Kit Neale: It makes some people look good and others not so, but as long as they feel good and are happy, we've done our jobs. It contributes a great deal to the economy but apart from that, it's really not that important, is it?