Matty Bovan RTW Fall 2023

London’s maximalist-in-chief Matty Bovan reined it in for fall, or did he?

The designer eschewed the runway this season, wanting to do something “intimate and more precious.” He staged a presentation in the upstairs bar and private members club at Langan’s Brasserie, showing 13 looks on models who mingled among the guests and posed for the cameras in their clashing, noisy — and sumptuous — silhouettes.

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Bovan worked almost entirely with deadstock fabrics and cast-off clothing, including denim from Calvin Klein, aviator jackets from Alpha Industries, and cut-up, damaged puffers from 66 North.

He pieced the puffers back together with safety pins (a nod to his late champion Vivienne Westwood), and hand-painted the denim, jackets and the Dr. Martens in his studio. One of his neighbors in York, where Bovan lives and works, crocheted the big colored medallions with their cascading ribbons that adorned taffeta skirts and knits.

Bovan did it all in the name of sustainability — and humanity — and in defiance of “an AI-controlled digital future. Hand-drawn, hand-touched, mistakes, these all contribute to my world of splendor and luxury, infused with the dirty, worn, and over-dyed,” he said.

Bovan saluted Westwood in myriad ways. He used safety pins to attach a tangle of gold fishnet and spangles to a pair of bleached-out jeans, and his quilted puffer gown had an air of 18th-century splendor. He gave those military jackets punk flair with purple swirls, puffy shoulders and crocheted medallions.

The knits, made from a mix of deadstock and new yarn, were meaty with NFL-style rounded shoulders, thick ribbed sleeves or ragged, sawn-off arms. Their patterns were wild, and included checkerboard squares and baroque swirls. It was a gutsy wardrobe for the ongoing battle against the bots.

Launch Gallery: Matty Bovan RTW Fall 2023

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