Edward Crutchley is a standout designer in the crowded London fashion scene, thanks in part to his decade-long collaboration with Kim Jones. He has the luxury of being able to freely express his creative vision in his fashion shows, without having to worry about commercial appeal. During the pandemic, Crutchley explored queer identity through dramatic showpieces, which became somewhat predictable. However, his fall 2023 collection marked a refreshing departure from this pattern.
The collection was expertly crafted and showcased Crutchley’s unique vision, while still incorporating elements of queerness for those who sought it. One standout piece was a pair of horn-shaped underwear, inspired by medieval codpieces. Crutchley stated that, “once a statement has been made, it becomes part of the work and there’s no need to continually talk about it.“
To inform the modernity of his collection, Crutchley turned to the pre-modern era, specifically the transition from medieval to renaissance. He drew inspiration from “The First Book of Fashion,” an illustrated record of 15th century fashion. He added a graphic twist with illustrations of a bawdy cast of characters reminiscent of 1920s/30s cartoons.
The collection was a mix of tracksuits, draped tailoring, and v-neck knits, all with a nod to historical fashion. Bucket hats, wrapped scarves, and headpieces added a touch of whimsy, while the roomy shoulders on some of the tailoring gave a heroic aspect. And, of course, there were the codpieces. The designer noted, “you’ve got to have a matching set.“
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