The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, is launching a new campaign to promote the booming British menswear industry, which brings £10 billion to the UK’s economy and is growing at such a rate that it is predicted to overtake womenswear sales by 2016.
The capital’s pioneering and creative menswear designers are once again being showcased at London Collections: Menswear, which takes place every January. Organised by the British Fashion Council, LC:M has, in just three seasons, become an essential fixture on the international fashion circuit, with its mix of classic British brands, new independent London labels and designers, and the best in fresh, up and coming talent.
“As the birthplace of the three-piece suit, the trench coat and the bowler hat, London has an unrivalled men’s fashion heritage. But our city is still setting the pace, with the emergence of new, exciting and cutting-edge designers. Their creative talent is why London Collections: Men has become the most important showcase of men’s fashion in the world. Our goal is to ensure that London remains ahead of the world fashion pack, and to support an important sector that creates thousands of jobs and generates £10 billion pounds each year,” the Mayor of London said.
Dylan Jones OBE, Editor of GQ and Chair of London Collections: Men, said that LC:M “is a fabulous way to kick off the season. We have all been overwhelmed by the enthusiasm for the project, and the scale and ambition of all the many designers who are now showing here is incredibly infectious.”
Christopher Raeburn, the British fashion designer and Artistic Director of Victorinox, said: “I’m proud to be a designer in London, the home of menswear. With such a rich heritage and groundswell of creativity it’s an exciting place to be; the momentum building with London Collections: Men has given us a platform to be proud of and it’s fantastic that the eyes of the world are now truly looking to see what’s next.”
From Mayfair, St James’s and the West End, to Shoreditch, Hoxton and the East End, London is not just an important menswear shopping destination, its streets are steeped in fashion history. Some of that history is featured in the London Menswear Heritage Study published last year by the Mayor of London and British Fashion Council, and there are a number of other opportunities to explore menswear design whilst London Collections: Men is on. They include The Anatomy of the Suit at the Museum of London, Hello My Name Is Paul Smith at the Design Museum, and the fashion galleries at the Victoria & Albert Museum.
To coincide with this high-profile men’s fashion event, the Mayor is launching the London Home of Menswear competition to find the most stylish postcode in the capital. Londoners are being encouraged to say why their area is the capital’s fashion hotspot. Those entering have the chance of winning some fantastic fashion prizes. These include a covetable made-to-measure three-piece suit by E. Tautz, the 19th century British military tailors, brought back to life by Norton & Sons in 2009; a pair of sharp shoes by Mr. Hare, famed for its rakish designs and elegant details; and a delightful tartan dog designed by Christopher Raeburn. Five runners-up will receive tickets to see the Hello My Name Is Paul Smith exhibition at the Design Museum. Over the course of the competition, there will be a dedicated poster campaign run on the London bus and underground network featuring Londoners wearing some of the UK’s signature menswear styles. To enter, get onto Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and explain why your London postcode is the most stylish using #londonmenswear and the start of your postcode (e.g. E17, NW10, SW4).