Last year’s creative Underground presentation was the talk of fashion week for its brilliant use of a car park, transforming it into an alternative fashion haven showcasing some fantastic established and emerging talent.
So it was with great anticipation that the fashion crowd set off to Silo Park for this year’s instalment of Underground, housed this time in an empty silo.
Upon arrival into the concrete space it was clear that this year curator Chris Lorimer of Ciel PR had upped the ante again, the silo’s echo-ey rooms were the perfect setting for the experimental fashion which lay within.
Featuring a collection of six designers; each of which occupied a room of the silo, their models in various installations ranging from mysterious and experimental to definitely pushing the boundaries.
It’s hard to know where to start to describe the fashion feast that was Underground. Each label’s efforts are worthy of a much lengthier description than we could provide her.
To start with Jojo Ross’s amazing water sculpture was technically stunning and featured a dress which cascaded water down the front encased in glass, a clever play on textiles and definitely a stand out.
The always skilful Meadowlark, created an occult-inspired space with three black-gowned models reminiscent of a witches coven, displaying their magical new jewellery including some magnificent detailed silver necklaces and arm bands.
Their alternative but very accessible take on jewellery has gained them many fans and there were several covetable pieces sure to feature on many people’s wish lists.
Cult local favourite Jimmy D, known for his quirky sense of humour, showed two models lounging on an office inspired set, clearly bored but wonderfully dressed, one in graphic prints referencing the early days of the internet, the other in slouchy black. The look was androgynous and creative, a clever mix of humour and wearability.
Jason Lingard’s Marilyn Manson inspired collection was definitely one of the most boundary pushing in terms of design, the space was creepily hung with axes, the models disturbing contact lenses making their skull-cradling and all the more surreal. The garments themselves were definitely goth, layers of black in warm wools and delicate silk making for a definite 90s feel.
Set amongst broken mirrors, Blue Blank’s two slickly groomed male models displayed intricate leather body harnesses and a cleverly cut leather jacket with a contrasting print. The look was strong, with lots of attitude, the nihilist theme evident in every aspect of the styling.
Featuring a couple set facing each other alternatively moving closer and further apart, THPRKS (pronounced The Parks) focus was on simple garments with a relaxed androgynous feel. The subtle cement-inspired fabric added an interesting look to the dark pieces on display.
Yet again the Underground delivered an experimental and very welcome alternative to the traditional runway show, the excited buzz in the silo from the assembled crowd will likely mean it again gets rave reviews this year.
– Evelyn Ebrey
Images: Yvonne Shearer Photography