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17-09-2012
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James Long S/S 2013 London
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September 15, 2012
LONDON
By Jo-Ann Furniss
Stripping back and focusing on what fashion is really about for them is the order of the day for many designers this season. And many of them are spelling out their agendas in graphic black and white. James Long is no exception. "I asked myself: Who are the girls I really like?" he said at his presentation today. "I wrote a list of them. I decided the girls I liked were not squeaky clean; they are more wipe clean!" For this collection, top of the list came PJ Harvey. "I saw her recently at the Albert Hall; her show was stripped-back, that concentration on her," Long said. "I found her inspiring, although I always have." Up there too was Winona Ryder's character in Beetlejuice, Lydia Deetz.

Mixed with this direct feminine inspiration was the graphic work of the artist John Baldessari, particularly his approach to text. The two influences met in the handwritten, doodling embroidery on some of Long's garments, the written list bound into the material like girlish love notes in a school exercise book, though these were penned by the designer himself.

Long is learning to reconcile the masculine and feminine in his output—he is somewhat more established as a maker of menswear—and in his case, that means the two are converging more and more. The pleated motif that recurred throughout his collection is one that was established in the men's Spring clothes; the leather—particularly his signature leather jackets and shorts—and knits are both fundamentals introduced in his earlier collections for men. Today he was decidedly on the right track; men and women are not so different after all. And many of the standout pieces did have a tougher, more masculine edge: the belted sundresses, for instance, that had the thick leather strapping around the chest, or the chevron-stitched leather jacket that simply shifted from one sex to the other.

"I don't know girls who wear lace, so why would I do lace?" said Long. Instead, there were graphic stitched cutouts on skirts that sufficed for decoration together with the earlier writing, and something the designer referred to as "ecto-slime" braiding. Presumably, he was possessed with the spirit of Lydia Deetz with that one—quite useful for a male designer in the womenswear world.







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17-09-2012
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17-09-2012
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I think it's a pretty great collection.

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17-09-2012
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i'm not sure i necessarily see PJ or winona outside perhaps the makeup and hair but this is definitely my favorite so far it reminds me of jurgi persoons somehow. the texture....that lean 50's/60's silhouette. and btw,his knitwear is delicious.


Last edited by Scott; 17-09-2012 at 07:57 PM.
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17-09-2012
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Very bold! I want this one now: http://postimage.org/image/46zn4ssnf/

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18-09-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott View Post
i'm not sure i necessarily see PJ or winona outside perhaps the makeup and hair but this is definitely my favorite so far it reminds me of jurgi persoons somehow. the texture....that lean 50's/60's silhouette. and btw,his knitwear is delicious.
Yeah, I was thinking the same. It feels more Fiona Apple than PJ Harvey to me. It's definitely interesting he cited PJ and Winona as inspirations for this. Everything seems so delicate and playful, it's definitely not as severe or dark as you would expect it to be with those influences. But I think that may be what I like most about this, it's so light, cute and different while still having that edge that prevents it from being too soft or cutesy. It's kind of non-obvious, if that makes sense. Everything looks so beautifully made and I think it's one of those collections I will keep going back to look at because it's so charming. I don't know much about this designer at all but this has me intrigued.

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18-09-2012
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you know i went back and looked at some of the close-ups and i can kind of see how PJ influenced him in a non-literal way....from the monochrome palette that she leaned toward(ann demeulemeester,i might add) during her tour for LES but also the texts reminded me of the dresses with the stitched lyrics she wore during the 'white chalk' era. and even in the texture itself,i can see how that could have been influenced by a lot of that raw and melodic texture of her last two albums. but the character lydia,is definitely more prominent in the silhouette because i remember she wore a lot of those shaped petticoat skirts.

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19-09-2012
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*claps* i like the concept.

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