When I met Simon, I started to long for London’s vibrant streets where no-one is afraid to make a style statement.
Simon Ekrelius is Swedish designer who manages to fly two flags at once, having been educated in Stockholm, and now bases himself in London’s East End, where all his clothes are produced. Swedish and British through and through, he speaks with the merest hint of a London lilt, so subtle you’d need training to hear it. When I met him at Stockholm Fashion Week, I started to long for London’s red buses, exclusive clubs and vibrant streets where no-one is afraid to make a style statement.
His collection included the kind of precision in cutting and design, tactile fabrics and muted soft greys one might expect from a Swedish designer, who loves architecture, the art of Rodchenko and the beautiful facial planes of Tilda Swinton, Devon Aoki and Georgia Jagger. A Scandinavian abroad then. But not quite. There was the question of the tall hats.
His cultural curiosity and acumen blossomed at a young age.
I was eying them a little too voraciously, speculating what a boon they’d be to those of the vertically-challenged persuasion (for a friend, you understand) when he started to tell me about his fabulously colourful childhood.
Living amongst a mélange of recent Stockholm implants: folks who hailed from exotic Middle-Eastern locales, and other points far and wide, he was lucky enough to grow up sampling food from several continents, as his parents invited their neighbours to dinner, or accepted invitations. Entranced by the styles of other countries and the mysticism of foreign stories, his cultural curiosity and acumen blossomed at a young age. Generally you don’t find this on the school curriculum: so lucky.
Lucky for us too, as we get to wear the results of his multicultural enquiries. Lucky for me also: he’s generous, stylish and a lot of fun! He looked mischievously at my quotidian grey beanie, slipped his voluminous grey coat on me, (with its smooth, thick wool making my heart sing as it snowed outside) and puffed the wooly cap up to resemble one of his hats. And then started chuckling so much that none of us could keep a straight face. As you can see.
I’ll be looking at his S/S collection soon, but meantime, check his A/W designs out and plan ahead. Inspired by the American Vogue photographer, Lee Miller, the collection, “Monochromatic,” is both sophisticated and quirky, with the aforementioned tall hats and the play on layering, volume and shape. Take a look at the slideshow on his website. Slides Nunber 1 and 4 are my absolute favs: respectively a huge kimono-esque top and shorts, and a flirty striped top with leg-o-mutton sleeves and a swing skirt.
The whole look is a must if you want to look fashion forward, sleek and, yes, classy.
And you are, butterfly, aren’t you?
* All Simon Ekrelius Collection Photographs © Peter Håkansson
Shop The Collection:
75 Redchurch Street
Photograph Of Simon Ekrelius at SFW by Dear Velvet