Designers explore a number of concepts to establish the foundations of their collection, thoroughly researching each facet prior to its materialisation. John Smedley SS18 went over and above this approach, embodying his ideas with a sense of meticulousness that was very much apparent within the collection.
Focussing on the notion of Precision/Fluidity, Smedley chose two seemingly opposing structural outlines and allowed them to coincide with one another into a wearable collection. A finely crafted waistcoat hung loosely over a textured knitted jumper, flowing yet maintaining a sense of structure through its sharp, narrow shaping. A round neck jumper perfectly framed the models neck with a painstaking sense of precision, whilst simultaneously maintaining an exact amount of fluidity against her torso.
Taking Japan as his influence, elements of its culture heavily contributed to the emergence of Precision/Fluidity, through both fine details and elegant forms. A heavily represented feature in Japanese culture, the wave recurred frequently as a finishing surface on the garments. In itself representative of the precision and fluidity juxtaposition, the wave was traditionally rendered from a woodblock print, a procedure that allowed a structured sense of accuracy, yet the very element is composed of something that could not be more fluid- water itself. Japanese influences were additionally visible in a navy silk v-neck robe embellished with cherry blossom that drew itself against the model in a manner that was elongating, but not compromising against her gait.
Creating fashion from this conceptual perspective, John Smedley SS18 utilizes the application of great skill to create sharpness without rigidity, and fluidity without inundation, successfully demonstrating how two mutually exclusive forms can coincide with one another, materialising into a fashionable garment.
Text: Libby Festorazzi