Neil Barrett S/S 2020 Milan Fashion Week Men’s
Mood board: Barrett is synonymous with a youthful, street-meets-suit sensibility. His collection for the coming season took the stiffness out of British school motifs – hinted in the repeated pinstripe – and ramped it up into something much brisker and more urgent. The collection channelled a youthful pep in the hybridity of sartorial staples with collegiate cool. A suit jacket was given a waistcoat back, military padding met a blazer. Denim jackets had sportswear sleeves. Bumbags were worn around the waist of trousers in matching fabrics. Boyish interventions.
Scene setting: The central space at Barrett’s ginormous Via Ceresio HQ had a graffitied, psychedelic pop-print floor under a shiny skin designed by South African artist Jody Paulsen. Paulsen is known for his cartoonish, large-scale felt works which include the pop iconography of logos, food, caricatures, animals, phrases and single words. He has been working in residence, creating new works in Milan for the label. In the show, his fictional crests echoed old school motifs and college garb. A unicorn with a proud red horn was splashed across a camel sweatshirt. The backdrop spelled out millennial aphorisms such as ‘Show Me Your Futurism, ‘Find Your Beach’ and ‘Pure Potential.’
Team work: A new collaboration with Wizpack, which describes itself as ‘the world’s first wearable luxury sound system,’ was revealed at the end of the show. The music went quiet as the models did their finale walk blaring Missy Elliot’s Get Ur Freak On from their backpacks. The nascent wearable tech industry is still finding ways to keep up to date with the latest looks. The bags, which include portable power for all smart devices, fit in seamlessly with the varsity shirt emblazoned with ‘SLAYDE’ (a RuPaulish pun on The Slade School of Fine Art) and spliced with leather bomber.