Harry Evans presents an indulgence in good vs.bad taste and maximalism for Spring/Summer 2018. Presenting with Fashion East at London Fashion Week, the collection is his first since graduating from Central Saint Martins MA in 2016. Evans’ clothes are intended for whoever wishes to wear them, regardless of how they identify. Produced in a particularly transitional period, the collection takes on a personal resonance for the designer. SS18 is about how endings inevitably bring about new beginnings, whilst also commemorating the impact of the designer’s late grandmother Betty and celebrates their relationship. “My grandmother taught me that life is for living and that it should be enjoyed,” says Evans. “She absolutely loved fashion, teaching me the importance of looking your best and most importantly to never take things too seriously.”
Taking heed of his grandmother’s advice and her penchant for gold, SS18 explores and investigates Evans’ fixation with opulence and kitsch. Also drawing upon and paying tribute to Siouxsie Sioux reflecting her toughness, taste for ‘naff’ glamour and ultimately her underlying darkness. Additional inspiration spans from Roman armour, Bob Mackie’s designs for Cher, 90s Versace to classical theatre costumes via the occult and mysticism.
Juxtaposing ‘high’ and ‘low’, bad taste with glamour and hybridising streetwear with carefully crafted couture detailing, Evans challenges preconceptions of ugly and borderline offensive combinations of fabrics and colours to craft his theatrical silhouettes. Alongside a mix of pleated gold lamé, yellow velvet, canvas and bubble-gum pink satin, strips of velvet are skillfully engineered into dresses through a combination of crochet and macramé techniques. Another dress is knitted with coated cotton yarn and the statement ‘denim’ pieces, fabricated of bonded cotton and canvas then finished with folk-inspired embroidery. Looks are styled with a profusion of accessories crafted by Evans, including charm belts and bracelets, lightweight clay bangles, pebbles and talismans worn as over-sized jewellery inspired by Iron Age and Etruscan jewellery.
LONDON BORN AND BASED HARRY EVANS FOUNDED HIS EPONYMOUS BRAND EARLIER THIS YEAR. IN 2016 EVANS GRADUATED WITH AN MA FROM CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS SPECIALISING IN KNITWEAR, RECIEVING THE CHLOE AWARD AND SUPPORT FROM THE ISABELLA BLOW FOUNDATION, FOLLOWED BY THE L'OREAL PROFESSIONNEL CREATIVE AWARD FOR HIS FINAL COLLECTION. POST-GRADUATION EVANS SPENT A YEAR WORKING AT CELINE AND HAS PREVIOUSLY WORKED WITH MEADHAM KIRCHHOFF, WALES BONNER AND MARY KATRANTZOU. EVANS' CLOTHES ARE INTENDED FOR WHOEVER WISHES TO WEAR THEM REGARDLESS OF HOW THEY IDENTIFY. SS18 IS HARRY EVANS' DEBUT PRESENTATION WITH FASHION EAST.