London Collections: Men starts today and not only has there been an extra day added onto the schedule further cementing itself in the fashion calendar, but on the 12th January John Galliano will show his first couture line (“Artisanal”) as creative director for Masion Martin Margiela.
This is one of the biggest scoops in recent years as not only will this be the first ever couture show for London Collections: Men, but it is also the first time we will see evidence of Galliano’s creativity since his downfall nearly 4 years ago.
And if you’ve been living under a rock during this time, let me update you; 4 years ago the Central St Martin’s graduate & Dior artistic director was caught making anti-Semetic and racial abuse to a couple sat next to him at a Parisian bar. It was captured on video and the media went into overdrive. Others came forward saying he had made similar remarks and after claiming this was due to his alcohol abuse he was then fined £4,700, promptly sacked from Dior by LVMH and lost over £10m in earnings. He swiftly disappeared into rehab and since designing Kate Mosses’ wedding dress and creating ready-to-wear colections last year, we hadn’t seen much of him till now.
Born in Gibraltar, Galliano’s parents moved to London when he was six. His mother, a flamenco teacher influenced his love of fashion and after graduating at Central St Martins in 1988 with a first class honours, he tried his hand at his own label which unfortunately failed, after which in 1990 he moved to Paris. He later became the first Brit to bag himself a top job at the fashion house Dior and the rest, as they say, is history.
It seems Galliano is now ready to get back in the spotlight and since making his first public appearance at this year’s British Fashion Awards to present Anna Wintour with a Lifetime Achievent Award, he has now chosen London to host his couture comeback show as it relates to his “formative years and his beginnings in the industry – it is intrinsically related to the city’s traditional tailoring history and heritage.” Reportedly there will be only be a small handful of 100 fashion editors and close friends allowed to view this show next week. The collection will then be shown again during Paris couture fashion week by appointment only.
This could be a testing time for Galliano (once hailed as the fashion golden boy) as there is bound to be mixed reviews, especially as he has chosen London over Paris! Personally, I think any designer who has the talent to invent new creations and expose their flamboyant, dramatic vision is a designer the fashion industry needs to keep hold of and is someone to be given a second chance.