London- – “A rare image of Kent & Curwen’s founder, Eric Kent with his brother, soon after the end of WW1, became my creative starting point for next winter’s collection,” says Daniel Kearns, Kent & Curwen creative director.
The grainy photograph shows a proud military man in uniform returning to 1920’s London, intent on establishing his clubwear and uniform business in tie stripes, blazers and knitwear. Impeccably dressed at all times, be it at the race-track, on the cricket pitch or lunching at his London club, Eric’s charisma would quickly propel him into high society, counting the Duke of Kent, Duke of Windsor, Errol Flynn and PG Woodhouse amongst his social circle.
And then it struck me, would Eric have mixed in social circles as diverse as the likes of Tommy and Arthur Shelby, who would have been comrades from the war, as well as his high society friends? And if so, how would they have influenced Eric, both sartorially and culturally, where those returning from war found themselves in a new world where anything was possible. If Eric and his wife Dorothy were setting about creating this brand today, what would they be wearing, what would they be into and who would they be socialising with?”
The Autumn Winter collection was constructed with this thought in mind, creating a relaxed, modern wardrobe with a blend of sartorial and sportswear pieces, worn with a new attitude.
Playing with the idea of formal British dress codes; uniforms and military references are reworked as sportswear and daywear. Reimagined college stripes and cricket whites are presented as eveningwear. Cropped jockey silks and jacket reference the Duke of Windsor coupled with tweed and plaids worn for a day at the races.
On sweatshirts, t-shirts and rugbys, the classic rose is re-worked in dark tones, on army camouflage and handmade in bullion metalwork, referencing the sartorial and military themes of the season.
Alongside the main collection, Kent & Curwen presents a capsule collection: ‘Garrison Tailors by Order of the Peaky Blinders’, consisting of wardrobe essentials inspired by the series. Classic three-piece tweed suits, signature collarless shirts, peg-leg wool trousers and flat caps – all in autumnal tones – evoke the sartorial atmosphere of the era. Illustrated ‘new rose’ canvas patches draw inspiration from Victorian photographic plates, adding to the capsule’s iconic British style.
Shoes from the Kent & Curwen and Trickers collaboration complement the styles.
Stylist: Alister Mackie / Streeters; Hair: Matt Mulhall / Streeters; Flowers: Flora Starkey; Catering: Cellar Society; Music: Dom Gore
Handles and hashtags:
@KentandCurwen @DavidBeckham @PeakyBlindersOfficial
Pictures: Getty Images
(By Anthony Cao)