'Hands like spades and a heart full of love,' read the invitation. The SIBLING autumn/winter 14 show was the happiest we've seen a male model for the whole of LC:M!
Joe Bates, Cozette McCreery and Sid Bryan painted a smile on their models faces and dressed them in lush knits, sparkly crochet and patchwork denim for their working-men inspired autumn/winter 14 collection, and it was the most upbeat, joy-filled show of the season! Fresh-faced boys in caps came out in slanket style blanket scarves, furry collars that you could just sink into and keyrings made from tiny fluffy hearts that every girl would kill for. This was working-man luxury, made from hard graft and love-tokens. We cosied up to one third of the SIBLING massive, Joe Bates, after the show...
What were your references for this collection?
It was my dad, really, plain and simple. I’m from a very traditional working-class family, both my mum and dad worked in factories and you realise, when you reach adulthood, that they’re heroes. They’re up at the crack of dawn everyday, the men do dangerous, laborious, even life-threatening jobs if they’re miners or something, day after day after day after day to bring home the bacon to create and support a nest for their family, so it was a love letter to my dad and all working-men like him.
Was it all of your dads?
We all come from very different backgrounds, Sid’s dad is from the army and Coz’s dad is an entrepreneur so I know there’s three of us but this one was instigated by my dad. Their dads will have their time!
Why all the smiling models?
We’re a happy brand! We were very conscious that - serious is the wrong word because we’re very serious about our brand and very serious about the process and everything – but the thing is it should be fine because we have fun doing it and we want to impart that. The boys’ smiling is as important as anything else to create the whole message. We’re not on a cold-facer, we’re not digging ditches in the middle of winter, it’s actually quite nice to do this job. Dressing up is lovely! I’m from a background where people do dig ditches in the middle of winter and they don’t smile a lot, so we could at least have the decency to show that we like doing this, we’re having a laugh doing it and the boys like that too. We hope it imparts on the clothes as well.
Which is your favourite piece?
It would be the hand-crocheted blazer in the sparkle-yarn. It’s a wonderfully dense, very, very dark blue and the blues and blacks were references to the tar and the oil and that’s why the floor was like it was to look like asphalt or freshly laid tarmac. Also, with the motifs in there, the love-hearts, they’re reference to welsh love-spoons and things like that, that the workers, when they were courting, they’d spend all day defying death digging out coal in the middle of the earth and then come up and carve intricate love-tokens for the woman that they were courting. That’s the romance in it.
Where does the quote from the invitation come from?
That’s from my childhood. I remember that quote as clear as if it was yesterday and because it was a long time ago, I couldn’t remember where it came from, but I just thought it was beautiful and exquisite and defined my father. When I say my father I mean all working men. So then I Googled and backtracked, assuming it was from some very deep poem, and there are lots of chatrooms on the internet and they say its from either an Irish poem, which no one’s found or, which I suspect is true, a Heinz advert! We found that funny and I don’t care, I think it’s a beautiful phrase which absolutely sums up the people like my dad all across the world who graft to produce a nest to keep their family happy.