Inspired by a history of subculture so synonymous with British style, Paul Smith Spring/Summer’ 19 challenges familiar sartorial codes.
Tailoring for today is confidently presented for both men and women. Informed by his personal experience of softening the stiffness of tailoring in the early-Eighties, Paul reinvigorates the suit. Tailoring remains at the core of the Paul Smith world and with rare independence the designer confidently contradicts the zeitgeist.
An exaggerated shape is reminiscent of trends gone-by, but contemporary relevance is delivered in construction and styling. Where once 500-gram tailoring cloths prevailed, now the same shapes appear in lightweight 200-gram wool, allowing for the versatility required for today. Ease and function is deeply entrenched in the Paul Smith ethos and is celebrated with the looseness of silhouettes and the nuance of sportswear inspired by Paul’s own love of cycling. The palette of pastels in bright and dreamy shades are often mismatched in suits and on leather trousers and outerwear.
Women’s tailoring echoes the men’s in cut and cloth but a distinct identity comes through in the confidence of the Paul Smith woman, who takes on a fresh, strong attitude. Suits are broken into separates and hand-drawn prints dance across light but form-fitting dress shapes and skirts with structures that strike a utilitarian theme. Checkerboard socks and intarsia knits are inspired by races to the finish-line and deliver a touch of humour in signature Paul Smith style.
Having pioneered the use of photographic printing techniques in the early stages of his career, Paul revisits the process this season with a renewed precision and finesse. An avid photographer, Paul’s father, Harold inspired Paul’s own love of taking pictures. For Spring/Summer ’19, archival photography by both Paul and his father appear throughout the collection, most noticeably on outerwear for men and in a more painterly style on fluid dresses and coats for women.
In footwear, typically British designs are embraced and then exaggerated. The loafer and the Chelsea boot are twisted in proportion and shape, often Goodyear welted. For women, a new lace-up ankle boot is introduced in snakeskin and handbags interpret the finish-line flag in a woven leather checkerboard.
Continuing the celebration of British design, the new Paul Smith collaboration with Cutler and Gross is showcased for the very first time. An iconic Cutler and Gross frame is given an injection of Paul Smith colour and will be available from PaulSmith.com immediately following the show.