For years, London’s menswear designers have been out of sync with the rest of the fashion world. Not in terms of ideas or support or sales, but timing. When men’s fashion weeks hit in January and July for Milan and Paris, Britain’s homegrown talents showcase at the end of London Fashion Week in February and September. MAN day has always attracted a bevy of publicity and attendees, but has been a bone of contention for some time, as it has been argued that by the time Brit designers hit the catwalks, the men’s buyers have closed their order books and spent all of their budgets.
But finally that is about to change. Yesterday the British Fashion Council announced that London will get its very own menswear few days! Three to be precise, from Friday June 15th until the 17th. Spearheaded by GQ editor, Dylan Jones - also the British Fashion Council’s first chair of the fashion Menswear Committee – who promised ‘to give menswear a bigger and better platform in this country, and to try and emphasize its commercial and creative importance.’ True to his word, then. It is thought that both Burberry and Paul Smith menswear will be on the schedule, as well as younger talent.
Designer Christopher Shannon, who has shown in London since his St Martins MA graduation in 2009, welcomed the new schedule. ‘This will be the first time that London is in sync with the international calendar,’ he told Grazia Daily. ‘To have established designers like Burberry show alongside new graduates, and younger talents, proves that London menswear is every bit as valid as Paris and Milan.’
Unfortunately, it also means that those showing Autumn / Winter 2012 on MAN day on the 22nd February, have just over three months to complete their Spring / Summer 2013 collections, ready for June. However, the BFC are adamant that this is a schedule they will stick to, with the next menswear weekend falling in January.