Following up on its Spring/Summer ’14 “Writers and Painters” collection presented last June, Burberry Prorsum dedicated its latest menswear show to four British artist greats of the early 20th century: Ben Nicholson, Christopher Wood, Lucian Freud and Duncan Grant.
Presented on the closing day of London Collections: Men, the collection, dubbed “A Painterly Journey,” opened with a run of strong artsy looks, going from a cream version of the house’s signature trench enlivened with graphic bands of color to a striking orange shirt in an abstract print of a London street map, and a navy v-neck sweater emblazoned with a print of St. Paul’s Cathedral. Dark botanical prints on the linings and exteriors of outwerwear lent a romantic feel, while an edgy coat wearing its striped lining silk on the outside added a hint of dandy.
Grounded by a classic palette of charcoal, ink blue, bottle green and bordeaux, and a rich range of traditional fabrics like brushed mohairs, micro tweeds, British wools and Scottish-woven jacquards, the collection’s artsy streak never overwhelmed, though, surfacing more in a gently bohemian British attitude than gimmicky brushstrokes. This was all about quietly jazzing up classics like a gray single-pleat carrot pant, cable-knit sweater and double-breasted coat with creative accents, such as hand painted silk squares, chunky equestrian blanket scarves and oversized St. Ives totes in British-woven blankets and authentic rugs that gave an elegant, artisanal twist.