christopher kane spring/summer 18 plays with the prim and perverse practices of suburbia

From OCD cleaning to kinky sex-parties, Kane invited us behind closed doors.

by Steve Salter
19 September 2017, 9:24am

This article was originally published by i-D UK.

"I have always been obsessed by the pristine woman, so clean, so proper, yet having an emotional breakdown inside," Christopher Kane confessed in the show notes. The Glasgow-born, London-based designer was keen to invite us behind the twitching net curtains and into imagined interiors. "There is something so OCD about it, something both clean and kinky. It's what goes on behind closed doors in those everyday environments; the smell of bleach, Royal Doulton figurines, readers wives, and a certain kind of British sauciness." Oh, the sweet sniff of suburbia that would greet any family on a visit to their glint-in-their-eyes grandparents.

From honed housecoats to duster dresses, sheer floral dresses with jeweled buttons to trash bag coats and scouring pad sweatshirts, the elegant and the everyday combined in wipe-clean surfaces, doily-like lace, bleach bottle blue, sinuous satin, and laundry lingerie. All teamed with the richly embellished rhinestone Crocs and the expanded Christopher Kane / Swarovski Atelier jewelry line of 'Bolster' cuffs, rings and earrings, as well as the classic necklaces.

Domesticity dissected, this was Kane at his best. In his hands the humdrum can become fantastical when fetishized. "Kim and Aggie couture," is how critic and author Alexander Fury succinctly described it. How clean was Kane's house? Well, with infamous 70s Streatham brothel-keeper Cynthia Payne as muse, everything was not as squeaky clean as it seemed, with kinkiness and quirkiness to be found behind the brass knockers. Mirroring Payne's word-of-mouth clientele, high met low throughout, as Kane's refined luxury was stitched with a sense of British slap and tickle.

Kane's kinky wardrobe for kinky people was typified in his collaboration with the gallery of the late artist John Kacere. The American's playful photorealist portraits were the perfect motifs of the collection — sensuous, suggestive with a slight silliness. Deliciously Kane.

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