Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Philip Sparks Spring/Summer 2010

Last week, I attended Philip Sparks’ Spring 2010 menswear show and I was immensely delighted by the designer’s creative vision and his clever and savy bespoke skills. The inspiration for this collection was cottage life and ‘50s Canadian Pacific Railway getaway ads. I’m a true patriot at heart and I love all fashion that speaks to and endorses Canadiana.

Philip collaborated with textile designer Kerry Croghan to produce a signature nostalgic “Gone Fishing” print that features rugged wilderness illustrations (camping, canoeing, fishing, etc.) reminiscent of days gone by that you might find on historical souvenirs or in a child’s school book reader from the ‘50s.

The styling and outdoorsy print definitely helped to set the mood and story of the collection. Philip Sparks’ show took us on a fishing expedition and it revealed a variety of looks that we might encounter along the way. Beautiful knit V-necks, cozy cardigans, preppy polo sweaters, seersucker and chintzed tuxedo vests, plaid dress shirts, retro windbreakers and sleek silhouette shaping coats perfectly married a modern design aesthetic with classic bespoke tailoring to create modern pieces with a touch of nostalgia. The collection was cohesive, impeccably constructed and the detailing heightened the interest of each piece. Each of the models WORKED the hardwood floor runway and each look flawlessly strutted past the show’s attendees - see my video above(and photo gallery here) for a glimpse at the show.

My favourite pieces and the ones that I found the most interesting were the red trench coat, the tuxedo vest with the racer back and all of the items that featured the signature “Gone Fishing” print. Each piece from this collection could completely stand alone on its own or easily be mixed with other pieces and accessorized to fully express the wearer. I rarely come across a collection that is so wearable and so transferrable to many men on many different levels. Your brother, father and son could all rock the same piece from this collection and it would look amazing and unique on each of them. Philip Sparks’ 2010 collection definitely reveals a design vision that acknowledges and embraces the modern man with a sartorial inclination.


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