Steve O Smiths queer culture and 90’s inspired ‘Pantomime’ collection drew a huge crowd during the last round of London Fashion Week.
TEXT CAROLINE KRAGER
PHOTOGRAPHY JEZGA STUDIO
With fashion month just around the corner, it feels like an opportune moment to have a look in the rearview mirror at some of last seasons highlights.
Steve O Smith, not to be confused with the man made famous by hurling himself off and into things on the MTV-show 'Jackass', presentation of his theatrical, colorful AW’19-collection stands out as one of London Fashion Week’s best.
Growing up in South-London, Smith chose to conduct his fashion studies in America at Rhode Island School of Design, before hopping back to Blighty in 2017 to start his eponymous brand.
The aesthetics of his work clearly references the English monarchy of yesteryear, queer culture, as well as 90's and naughties pop culture, and has, since the very beginning, had a palpable theatrical flair. In his new collection - called 'Pantomime' - Smith has pushed the envelope even further.
The set design made it seem like one had stumbled onto a stage where a performance was just about to kick off, and the looks and styling all made a point of referencing classic figures in theatre; the revolutionary, the harlequin, the lord and lady, the prince and princess, the vamp, the fox, the soldier. The casting was fascinatingly diverse and strongly added to the total vibe.
According to the leaflet handed out to the crammed audience - few of the presentations at the Strand's 'Discovery Lab' drew such a crowd - Smith's aim was to "reimagine the pantomime for the era of farce that we have now found ourselves in". Obviously not one to shy away from underlying social commentary, he goes on to write "Is it a comedy or a tragedy? That's up for you to decide”. In the middle of a national psychodrama Steve O Smith puts on the pantomime you cannot - and will not - stop watching.
Jezga loves his colorful, loud and political - yet still humorous - approach to fashion.
See for yourself.