Paul Smith’s AW24 collection ingeniously reimagines classic tailoring, seamlessly blending traditional elements with a touch of modernist design. The assemblage pays homage to 20th-century English dress codes, infusing them with experimental prints, unconventional fabric choices, and a lush, earthy color palette.
At the heart of Paul Smith’s design philosophy is the belief in self-expression through style. From the inception of his business, he transformed men’s clothing into a realm of fun, playfulness, and light-heartedness, introducing color and pattern to a domain that was typically somber. While reshaping the somewhat staid world of men’s tailoring, Paul emphasized the importance of understanding and adhering to the rules before daring to break them.
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For AW24, Paul Smith unveils a collection that gracefully intertwines tradition with irreverent modernism. Silhouettes pay homage to classic English garments of the mid-20th century, featuring suits with a fuller, more relaxed cut, double-pleated trousers, and distinctive details like inverted pleats and belted backs. Statement outerwear draws inspiration from the utilitarian design of WW2 despatch rider coats, but with a bold visual approach—vibrant purples, greens, and eye-catching patterns.
Central to the collection is the ‘Photogram’ print, inspired by beaux arts style wallpapers and early photographic experiments like cyanotypes and Man Ray’s ‘Rayograph’ from the 1920s—a rebellious technique against the norms of its time. The color palette, featuring a base of aubergine, bottle green, navy, and chocolate brown, is disrupted by flashes of ochre, lime, and silver-grey.
Fabric choices disrupt tradition, juxtaposing British gabardine, cavalry twill, and heavy tailoring flannel with grungy mohair, overdyed denim in acidic hues, and bleached military surplus cotton drill. While elegant tailoring is quintessentially British, punk is equally ingrained in the culture. Outerwear introduces a rural influence, adapting classic country walking coat silhouettes with a modern, sporty twist—matching fatigue-style trousers for a bold statement.
Debuting in Paris on January 19th, the AW24 collection features a runway show with both male and female models adorned in a mix of men’s and women’s pieces. It masterfully engages with the past, creating something fresh for the present—a collection that pays respect to fashion history while maintaining a healthy irreverence for its rules. In essence, Paul Smith’s AW24 is a perfect embodiment of his guiding principle: ‘classic with a twist.’
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One of my friends once said, I am in love with words and a zoned out poser... well, I will keep it the way it has been said! Besides that you can call me a compulsive poet, wanna-be painter and an amateur photographer