I have done a lot of shitting in the last few posts. I thought I would like to take a moment to do a bit of a review of a menswear designer who is little known, but a personal favourite of mine. Not everyone will like the looks, but this is my blog, so.... deal with it.
Below is my review for Alexandre Plokhov.
On first glance, Alexandre Plokhov is a fashion designer that resembles a character from Command and Conquer : Red Alert. Born in the USSR in '67, who had worked as a member of the Strategic Missile Troops until the mid nineites, he left for a fashion design career change and moved to America. Sometimes I wonder if in order to be awesome you need to have an epic back story, like our bond villain Alexandre. Remind me to fabricate mine later. And hippy rhetoric aside, I'm generally impressed with anyone who leaves a job to follow their "calling". This is especially true for people in awkward circumstances or later in life. Post cold war Russia was probably not the land of opportunities.
Plokhov started a label called Cloak with a colleague after working as a tailor and pattern maker for Marc Jacobs. He then worked as head design at Versace (which is a big deal).
Afterwards he struck out on his own with his own label that started in 2011. He released collections consistently, mostly in menswear but with a singular womanswear collection (designers usually do this the other way around).
I'm not going to try and explain someone's attitudes to their art when they can do so much better than I can. There is an amazing interview with Plokhov that explains a lot about how he feels about fashion. I enjoyed the interview immensely. It's short and you all should read it. It really captures the ideas that Alexandre has about fashion and style, believing less in following trends and wanky fashion ideas, and more in making timeless fashion. A second great (and short) interview is linked in the image below.
For those of you who don't know me out in the meatworld, I wear black. A lot of it. Almost exclusively. It would be no surprise to anyone that my fav designer enjoys working in predominantly blacks, and only introduces singular lots of colours on rare occasion. As an established tailor, Plokhov is also into fitted looks, rather than the drapey loose garments typical of other designers doing similar themed menswear (ie: Rick Owens), and I always want tailored over drapey. I think that Plokhov does a great job of presenting to people something that is interesting and different, bold and musculine, beautiful and dark. Like some kind of sexy military industrial complex. Below is a selection from my favourite season , Menswear Autumn/Winter 2013 (F/W2013-M)
Plokhov's full collections can be found on his labels own website. You can see he has a clear design style and idea all the way across the collections. I'd really recommend you have a look. Plus, It's a nice site, much nicer than mine.
Coming clean, I'm not normally into the idea of the 'high fashion' designers. I generally think they're are out of touch with majority of people, creating beautiful works of art for the rich rather than great fashion that actually has a place in the real world. One of the reasons I like Plokhov so much is that it is obvious that he get's that. He doesn't want guys wearing perfect cube jackets on the high street, or dressed as artsy clown monsters at after work drinks. Unlike most high end designers, I would say that I would happily wear any of these looks day to day. Sure, some more than others, and not everyone would (and I certainly couldn't afford it), but all his outfits have a wearable and practical element to them as well as being, I think, super cool. I like that.
Second of all, I love the idea that someone can come back from a job they have been doing (USSR Soviet Missile Troops) and have a full career change midlife. I don't know how many of you have gone through doing something like this, but for me, it's goddamn heroic.
Lastly, and most shallowly, I do really love the clothes.
So, what did you think? Am I the only one into this? I don't know if you, dear Turncoats, are followers of designers and their work, but if you are I'm sure you have favourites. I'll do more reviews in the future, so let me know in the comments or via the contact page if there's something you want me look at, or something you want to add. And there's always the Facebook. I'm morbidly curious to know.
Until next time,