With Paris menswear shows just passed and British men’s designers making more of a mark than most, the industry is standing up to the idea of our homegrown talent taking their business’ overseas. So, the British Fashion Council, has announced the formation of a new menswear Fashion 2012 committee, dedicated to raising the profile of UK designers and increasing UK sales.
Chaired by Dylan Jones, the GQ editor, the body will create events, involving the UK's leading brands, which will "celebrate and showcase British menswear.” The first event will be in Paris on Sunday, whilst the main talk of the town was about the fabulous collection from British designer Kim Jones, 33, the award-winning style director of Vuitton menswear.
Heading to Paris or Milan is a path well travelled by British designers looking to showcase their collections in a more technical and craft based environment, but it is one this new committee is looking to challenge.
Christopher Raeburn, winner of the British Fashion Award for Emerging Talent in Menswear, who is showing in Paris this weekend, said: "It's exciting to have support from people at the BFC who can bring their expertise to British menswear. Improving the presentation of catwalk shows is very important for attracting buyers. Some designers will want to go abroad but I'm proud of the high quality manufacturing skills we have in wool, leather and accessories we have in the UK."
"We need to improve the visibility of menswear in comparison to womenswear," he said. "There's more money in womenswear. There are five days devoted to womenswear in the London Fashion Week schedule compared to one for men."
Raeburn added, “In some ways menswear is more of a serious business because of the functionality and attention to detail of the clothes. The structure of a menswear manufacturing business is already there."
British menswear is currently enjoying such growth and momentum, with British talent purveying all the main fashion capitals, that it seems a pertinent time to form this committee.