The references: War, conflict, injustice. Matthew Miller’s SS15 show was called ‘Introversion’ and the collection was inspired by the life of post-conflict soldiers. If AW14, with its slogans ‘Born to Fail’, was moving, this was set to be even more so.
The clothes: Conceived as a re-imagining of WWII demob outfit, the three piece suits given to serviceman after completing tours of duty as a way of prepping them for returning to ordinary work, Miller offered up sombre pinstripe cut into tailored jackets, tunics and trousers, adorned with memorial floral wreaths worn round necks and wrists. Shredding and patchwork referred to the lack of quality endured by most demob suit wearers – and to the state of original suits bought by Miller as research – but you couldn’t help thinking, frankly, about death. The suits looked as if they’d been taken apart and put together again, seams showing – a reference perhaps to the state of mind of soldiers returning from the front. Miller’s forte is re-structured tailoring and the symbolic value of that skill was amply appropriate.
The palette: Blue, dark blue and navy blue. And grey. All the military-slash-funereal connotations of the colours were played upon to create a show that was dignified, uncompromising and heartfelt.
The accessories: Miller collaborated with G-SHOCK on watches and stuck silk-satin patches onto the front of slip-on shoes by Italian footwear brand Diemme.
The standout look: Hard to choose between the deconstructed black silk suit, raw edged cuffs dangling over the hands, as much romantic poet as demob soldier – or the zig zags line of the patchwork vest and trousers suit, worn over a simple short sleeved white shirt.
The challenges: Sleeveless pinstripe tunics were probably as challenging as it got, sartorially. No matter how advanced the cutting, Miller is always wearable. Motif Velcro patches bearing the words ‘Anti’, ‘War’, ‘Social’ and ‘You’ allow the wearer to customise their outfits. Whether or not you want to get that public with your anger is up to you but this was the most political show I’d seen in a while.
From the show report: There was no show report. Not on my seat anyway.