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James Long Menswear A/W11

Showing on both women's and menswear day, the latter saw a 90s feel with loose cardigans and chunky knits

Another designer on the schedule showing as part of both the women’s shows and on menswear day, James Long came through with a collection of menswear and knitwear that added a luxe grunge feel. Heavy, wrap around full length coats were a strong feature of the show accompanied by mohair, open knit and huge chunky knit jumpers. Floor length cardigans added in that almost 90s Seattle feel which was complemented with the detailed biker jackets, something that has been across both his menswear and women’s shows this season.

Another signifier of what could have been sub culture influences was the appearance of bleached and stone washed denim in fitted jeans. Colours were muted and soft but not cold. Lighter greys and blues appeared throughout, contrasted with paste yellows and cream. Lavender also made an appearance and sat perfectly with the misty and subdued tones.

Dazed Digital: What was your theme for the menswear?
James Long:
This season I wanted a kind of polluted mayhem collection. I wanted a lot of fabrics to appear as if you were looking at them through fog. I wanted the boy to be Vincent Gallow as a grizzly bear. Lots of raining inspired me and the rain drops are where all the spots came from and also the paint falling down the shirts. I felt like it was very much more inspired by London as well this season, as for the last collection I was spending a lot of time in New York. I also wanted something heavier with the shapes, I wanted to get a bigger silhouette shape in the knitwear and then a more tailored one on the outerwear.

DD: Where did the ideas come from to do those huge, all encompassing jackets?
James Long:
It was kind of imagery I had been thinking about. An idea of being in a forest and wanting to wrap yourself up, to protect yourself. And you just want to feel strong. I also really wanted to reinterpret some menswear classics. There was the James Long pea coat with the exaggerated collar and boning, just to give a feeling of a slightly more grown up guy. I also did a coat where the sides were opened up so you could your knit and tailoring.

DD: Did you work with any new techniques?
James Long:
I looked at a lot of techniques of tailoring and then a lot of the fabrics were actually double faced wools. I didn’t want it to look too smart, more a kind of answer to smart but not a suit.

DD: Can you tell me about the high gloss black silver trousers?
James Long:
They were inspired by the idea of rain falling on tarmac. We did a perforated leather against a patent and that is what made up the fabric of those trousers. If you look close you can see that the gloss comes through from the perforations.

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