With the theme “Not Another Catwalk”, Universal Works’ S/S16 presentation took place in the stunning St George’s church in Bloomsbury, London.
WORDS & PHOTOS: OLIVER @OLIVERINSTEAD
Founded in 2008, Universal Works is led by director and designer David Keyte, who has spent 30 years in the game and sources inspirations from his upbringing in the Midlands and childhood memories of his elders’ work attire and everyday dressing.
Combining elements of a runway and visual installation, Keyte has teamed up with Nottingham-based filmmaker Allan Buxton to creative a fun stop-motion animated film that ingeniusly showcases the collection on not-a-runway. The video follows a series of comedic scenes starting with the models suiting up in an assembly line to getting blown away by a giant fan to eventually, the designer himself waving goodbye to the viewers flying on a rocket backpack (BRB saving up for one of those…)
What a brilliant way to breathe some life and personality into the clothes!!
As successful as the animation is, I somehow feel it has ever so slightly taken the attention from the fashion. In the sense that there really hasn’t been enough discussions on the collection itself… which I thought was fantastic. For the British brand’s latest offering, the focus is all on fun, fit and functionality this season. While the first concept is cleverly conveyed via the tech-savvy approach, the garments themselves are understatedly chic and contemporary. As intended by Keyte, the tone palette is kept rather dark and earthy. White, navy, beige and other sandy shades prove dominant – making this a very accessible and wearable style for everybody. Meanwhile, the occasional appearances of a minimalistic print give stylistically more adventurous gents some room to put their own stamp on an otherwise sophisticated look.