cottweiler spring/summer 16
Newgen's newest designer's reference cults and new age spirituality.
Cottweiler might only just have joined the Newgen fold and landed a place on the official LC:M calender, but the design duo, Ben Cottrell and Matthew Dainty, have been presenting their dystopian sportswear vision since 2012. Spring/summer 16 is their eighth season now, and, taking over Oasis Sports Centre's squash courts in Holborn on the opening day of LC:M they presented a refined, stripped back vision of masculinity embracing spirituality and nature.
A monkish cleric in pearlescent white, described by the duo as a gathering of an imaginary new age group, they've stripped out the colours from their last presentation, which was full of sky blues, matte greys and jet blacks, and instead focus on the simplicity, purity and range that white can provide. The cuts were classic Cottweiler--sitting low over knees and elbows and cropped at the ankle, but there was a new, almost Craig Green-esque lightness to some of the cotton shirts, and a quite determination taking over from in your face aggression.
What inspired this season's collection?
This season we looked at the London Hare Krishna group and New build housing and show homes as a key inspiration for the collection and also the set design. We wanted to combine elements of religious dress codes with soft furnishings as we saw some similarities but also strong contradictions in the way that these two themes express notions of nature and harmony.
You've also returned to an all white palette, what was the decision to strip the colour out of the collection?
Although the collection at first appears all white there are a lot of different shades of cream, and some of the fabrics have interesting textures. One particular fabric shines different pearl colours in the light. We like to create new colours by playing with transparency and layering. Most pieces also come in blue and coral, but we decided to only show the muted and tonal colours as we felt it would have more impact for the presentation. Then the pearl finish gives an etherial quality and added to the softness we were trying to achieve this season.
Why the move away from the more confrontational clothes and dystopian sets of the last few seasons?
We wanted to challenge ourselves and at the same time it is a representation of where we are at as individuals.
Has being part of Newgen affected the way you work?
It has allowed us to show what we do to a wider audience which has been really exciting for us. The support and guidance from a business point of view is invaluable. It's an honour to be part of the official schedule and its something we have been working towards for a long time.
Text Felix Petty
Photography Mitchell Sams