A trip to the Nevada Desert with a copy of Donna Tartt’s 2013 novel “The Goldfinch” was the launch pad for Liam Hodges’ SS19 collection, Slick Trash, which rounded out day one of London Fashion Week Men’s on Saturday.
Inspired by Las Vegas, the collection doesn’t tap into the immediately obvious symbols of the city. “It isn’t a Vegas collection solely about the strip or Celine Dion shows,” explains Hodges. “It’s also about life in between — I've always been interested in future dystopian visions, and when I went to vegas I realised that the Mad Max Thunderdome had been here all along... it’s just called Caesar's Palace.”
The designer has made a name for himself with prints, giving us leopard print by the bucketload, mixed in with hawaiian hibiscus, flames and patchwork tartans thrown in for good measure. “We've focused on pushing the print techniques we’ve used,” he says. “We’re screen printing garments before dying them, and introducing high density screen prints along with CMYK colour separations.”
“For us, it’s about broadening the scope of the brand”
It may sound like a lot to take in, and it is. But Hodges has refined his silhouettes into wearable workwear-meets-streetwear pieces that will keep his stockists — Dover Street Market, Harvey Nichols and Selfridges included — as well as his loyal followers in London and beyond, satisfied.
Now four years old, the world of Liam Hodges is expanding, introducing new product categories and collaborating with retailers to fill out the story of the label. “For us, it’s about broadening the scope of the brand,” says Hodges. “We work with other brands for two reasons: either their expertise helps us learn and introduce new product — this season we introduced a small range of leather goods: a belt, card holder and keyring — or it helps us reach different price points and broaden our customer profile.” he explains.
In a fashion week that continues to shrink with each season, we can rely on Hodges to push his ideas to surprising lengths, delivering a collection — and show — that exemplifies the confident chaos of London fashion, while cementing his position as a must-see designer on the schedule.