monochromatic co-ordination creates a form of camouflage which can be linked to privacy as it allows people to blend into their environment and not be distinctly visible. The use of silver and black tape can be linked to surveillance as it has a link to the equipment used in that field. Furthermore, the use of the speaker is ironic as surveillance cameras do not pick up on sound; like the image itself, surveillance film is silent.
THE MAIN SHOOT
MODEL: aligned with Cottweilers unique looking models – (Eastern European looking)
LOCATION: Grit / Gravel, Metal, Scrap Yard (somewhere where there would be surveillance cameras)
DETAILS OF STYLING, FABRICS AND COLOURS:
- I am going to use more of a range of colours than they usually do – which makes the sub-brand more universal which means it would sell more (appeals to a wider market)
- When putting items together I will have to ensure labels of sportsbrands aren’t seen
- Cottweiler see themselves as more menswear so it couldn’t be overly sportwear – therefore I am going to have a mix of lycra, polyester and cottons
- I am taking influence from 90s styling, garments and photography
HOW I PLAN TO PORTRAY THE MACRO TRENDS PRIVACY AND SURVEILLANCE
- Use of metal / wire
- Use tape on clothing
- Camouflage elements – blends in with background – similar colours to surroundings – MONOCHROMATIC CO-ORDINATION
- Camera angles
- Hidden faces or screens / something between camera lens and model
- Inspiration from youth culture – links with the ideas of privacy (at that age you want your space and are trying to escape your parents), also surveillance for feeling as if you’re being watched; by parents, siblings, peers, teachers… also could be in the literally sense of police surveillance
HOW I WOULD RELEASE AND ADVERTISE THE LOOK-BOOK
- Cottweiler have a strong online presence so the look-book would be released online
- Advertised on the main brands Instagram and the sub-brands
- I would create a website purely to launch the look book and the new sub-brand
THE MACRO TRENDS I GOING TO PORTRAY
SURVEILLANCE + PRIVACY
My decision to select these distinct trends is motivated by their strong relatability to Cottweiler as a brand. Designers, Ben Cottrell and Matthew Dainty always look to their social environment for inspiration and references.
HOW I PLAN TO MAKE THE LOOK-BOOK SUCCESSFUL
The look-book is going to be unconventional and somewhat like a publicity stunt – styling garments in unconventional ways (T-shirt on legs, shorts as sleeves, jacket worn as a skirt). This will likely appeal to customers, not only because its distinctive but because its aesthetically intriguing.
The global market for network cameras is expected to grow between 16 to 22 percent annually in the next three to four years, according to reports by market research companies TSR and IHS. The Chinese market for CCTV and video surveillance equipment, which also includes analogue cameras, amounted to 33 percent of the total global market in 2013, which was then worth USD 13.5 billion.
This growth has come from urbanization; which drives the need for intelligent security solutions. Growing population density in urban areas across the world increases the need to build smarter cities that can meet the security needs of its citizens, who have a right to feel safe. Furthermore, surveillance camera technology is increasingly viewed as a critical component for law enforcement’s ability to solve and prevent crime.
How fashion has been influenced
- The trend of using the date/time at the bottom of the image
- Possibly the trend of using council estates for locations
- Profiles of people in image
- Materials that have a metallic element
How I could portray this trend in my look book
- Use of metal or equivalent in images
- Camera angles echoing surveillance angles (from above)
- The look book itself having the date/time or other surveillance filters
- Having cameras or surveillance equipment in images
The world’s population is ageing, mainly due to increased life expectancy, but also because women globally have had fewer children over the past 55 years, meaning that the proportion of older people is growing faster than the general population. Ageing populations will impact future economic growth prospects, due to reduced labour forces and lower savings and investment rates. At the same time, age-related public expenditure is projected to increase strongly. In 1950, there were 205 million persons aged 60 or over in the world. By 2012, the number of older persons had increased to almost 810 million. It is projected to more than double by 2050, reaching 2 billion, with the population aged 80 years or over growing faster than any younger age group within the older population.
How fashion has been influenced
This trend is seen in fashion through older people becoming fashion stars and older models. For example, Iris Apfel née Barrel, who was born on August the 29th, 1921, found fashion fame after the documentary called Iris, by Albert Maysles. She studied art history at New York University and attended art school at the University of Wisconsin. She then found a career as an interior designer and at the age of 90 became a fashion icon.
Similarly, Older models are seen on billboards and on catwalks more than ever. For example, Yasmina Rossi started her modelling career at 28 and is bigger than ever at the age of 60. Rossi is well known for being a marks and spencer main model and campaign star. Furthermore, the documentary and blog Advanced style by photographer and author, Ari Seth Cohen, explores the beauty of the older generation. He states how it’s a project devoted “to capturing the sartorial savvy of the senior set.” He says, “I feature people who live full creative lives. They live life to the fullest, age gracefully and continue to grow and challenge themselves.” Ari has a longtime interest in clothing and style and a lifelong affinity for his elders.
How I can portray this in my look book
- Use of older models
- Use of patterns – that are seen on the older generation
- Trend portrayed through the set design – based in an old fashioned living room / home
Privacy is the right to be let alone, or freedom from interference or intrusion. According to research from Strategy Analytics, trends in 2017 will reflect concerns over security, network connectivity choices, and privacy. As a concept, privacy, and the need to protect it has been around for decades. However, with technology and the growth of the internet, the need for privacy is bigger than ever.
How fashion has been influenced
- The theme / concept has been explored in many collections
- In photography the use of covering faces with fabric or while editing on photoshop / illustrator is seen
- Possibly brands not dominating their pieces with logo’s / brand typography
How I can portray this in my look book
- Hidden faces
- Some form of camouflage or use of the same colours
- Location – somewhere away from the general public
As the world becomes smaller, while travel gets cheaper and restrictions more relaxed, more people are choosing to live, study or work abroad. Continued migration has a significant impact on economies, marketers and consumers alike. Greater ethnic diversity offers marketers a wealth of opportunities. However, there is a darker side to migration with more than a million migrants and refugees crossing into Europe in 2015, sparking a crisis as countries struggled to cope with the influx, and creating division in the EU over how best to deal with resettling people.
How fashion has been influenced
Many fashion designers have incorporated migration and the movement of people into their collections. This is seen particularly in Prada’s Autumn Winter 2016 collection that responds to war and migration. The designer says she was feeling ‘deeply serious’ and ‘trying to understand mankind’s difficulties’
How I can portray this in my look book
- Objects in unconventional places
- Movement – whether that’s model’s physically moving or movement of garments / fabrics
- Having an element of ‘lost’ – in facial expressions or location
Cottweiler are known for ‘story-telling’ and portraying a narrative at presentations and shows. Their Spring Summer 2017 collection is no exception. Cottweiler envisioned a future European community representing a new Mediterranean. “The inspiration originally came from an archaic Cycladic sculpture that was passed down to Matthew from his grandmother, who was from one of the Aegean Islands,” says Cottrell. “This sculpture became the starting point for our research into the importance of the Mediterranean, past and present.”
This looking at the importance of the Mediterranean and envisioning of a future European community may have been a reaction to Brexit and the growing political divisiveness in Europe. The British designers may be portraying the idea that a European community is diminishing and now only exists in imagery of paradise. For example, Dainty and Cottrell decided to place smashed ceramics over the runway and called it the “future ruin of a hotel resort”. In itself, smashed ceramics hold connotations of aggression and brokenness.
However, there is humour surrounding the collection as Cottweiler look to holiday makers for inspiration; those that laze around in leisure garments going for health treatments or to the gym. The sky blue looks could be said to be a golf-visor and the towels tucked into waistbands are those going to the spa. This collection, like a lot of Cottweilers previous collections have an element of ‘fetishisation of sportswear’. This influence derives from the gay skinhead scene; which is communicated in Murray Healy, the author of 1996’s Gay Skins: Class, Masculinity and Queer Appropriation – one of the earliest investigations into the gay skinhead scene. Ben Cottrell grew up as a skinhead and therefore may have seen or experienced this culture first hand.
This influence is seen through the transparent shorts and trousers, glossy fabrics, open jackets tucked into trousers and necklaces that are similar to ‘spiked bondage’ necklaces. ‘Look 6’ (seen in fig.8) in particular carries strong references as the topless ‘pool boy’ wears loose glossy trousers and a hat. The designers have admitted to this being an influence. However, the pair do not set out to be sexually provocative, they see this as a subtle influence and feel that the lines are blurred.
// Photography – SIMON ARMSTRONG //
Cottweiler’s Spring Summer 2016 presentation at London Collections Men was one of the most talked-about shows of the season. The collection has two key influences; London Hare Krishna Group and New Build housing. They combined elements of religious dress codes with soft furnishings to create a collection that explores notions of nature and harmony.
The fusion of religion and soft furnishings may be a reaction to the current trend of compassionate capitalism. Within this we see capitalism being used as a means to achieve compassionate goals. Therefore, the influence of new build housing represents capitalism and materialism and Krishna represents compassion; being the God of compassion and love in Hinduism.
The idea of a return to spirituality can be seen in the theme of cleanliness in the collection. Furthermore, it is seen in the key references; “In Hinduism, cleanliness is an important virtue and the Bhagavad Gita describes it as one of the divine qualities which one must practice.” Also, the necessary virtues of a new house are cleanliness and simplicity in design; both are necessary for modern living.
When the designers viewed and analysed show rooms for new houses they found that clean white interiors effectively portray an air of luxury. Cleanliness is portrayed throughout the collection and has impacted the choice of colours, fabrics, cuts and the presentation itself. The collections colour palette present shades of white; colours are stripped out and the focus instead is on the simplicity, purity and range that white can provide. Cottweiler like to create new colours by playing with transparency and layering of fabrics – “The pearl finish gives an etherial quality and added to the softness we were trying to achieve this season.”
The presentation for the collection was set in the squash court of a sports centre in Holborn. The influence of show rooms is clearly seen in the set design; the models standing on a single piece of furniture and simple surroundings; no clutter.
Furthermore, I believe the pink background provides warmth to the presentation. This colour choice may have been a reaction to the trend ‘Millennial Pink’. The trend slowly began in 2012 and found its title ‘Millennial Pink’ in 2016 when the trend peaked. This trend has influenced male and female fashion and has encouraged men to wear shades of pink without feeling feminine or emasculated.
The colour now has lost a lot of its feminine connotations and has become more gender neutral. This may have been interesting to Cottweiler as the designers are continuously blurring the lines between conventional gender attributes. Although it’s a menswear brand, hints of femininity show in the spring summer collection by the use of the translucent fabric; which could also link back to their initial influence of the Hare Krishna Group and how god is often portrayed as genderless.
Furthermore, the collection could be a reaction to the trend of minimalism in fashion and interiors at the time. This is portrayed within the minimalist colourways and classic tailoring cuts and choice of fabric. The collection embraces and prioritizes cut and craft; Garments sit low over knees and elbows and are cropped at the ankle. The simplistic design means more importance on fits and tailoring; which is something that Cottweiler deem of high importance.
// Photography – SIMON ARMSTRONG //
Cottweiler’s Autumn Winter 2016 Collection explores the concept of a post civilized society and the agricultural and theoretical principles of this new culture. The collection represents a community transitioning from industrialization to a new stage of agronomic autonomy; where a recovery of ideologies from the past is seen and mixed with new technological structures.
This looking to the past may be a reaction to the imminent dangers associated with the current monopolization of the food industry. As the global food supply becomes concentrated, so does corporate power in dictating what we put into our bodies. With the top 100 food manufacturers accounting for 80% of all food sales, it is clear that this concentration of power is likely to continue. Additional fears such as Monsanto’s growing influence in the agricultural industry through its deployment of GM seeds combines with this problem of monopolization to further shift power from consumer to corporation.
The collection emphasizes a recovery of the past; to a time when agricultural autonomy was much greater. By imagining a future civilization in which we have regained out agricultural autonomy through the use of past methods and ideology. The collection has a colour palette of beige, grey, dark blue and black. The choice of colours is significant as its creates a somewhat serious tone; which highlights the significance of the collections message. Cottweiler portrays a ‘waterproof’ agricultural worker in this collection. The designers do this by covering tinted cellophane over natural fibres and by the use of waterproof shearling and performance fabrics.
This recapturing of consumer power is highlighted through a number of elements. Firstly, the powerful stances and facial expressions of the models, as well as their ethnic diversity signifies ‘the people’ as a united collection as opposed to a particular secular group. The set design presents the models in a field of wheat; which suggests that they are in control of the materials and sources around them. Similarly, the wheat is used as a form of ornament, placed in a rucksack and embroidered on a jacket; this evokes a sense of authenticity as the wheat symbolizes freedom, growth and control.
In addition, the collection emphasizes transition and transformation through a fusion of past and future, with man-made materials representing the future and organic materials symbolizing the past. The shell and plastic fabrics absorb the light in a specific way that gives us a secondary set of colours to admire. This provides the viewer with a choice, which could highlight the autonomous choice which is central to the concept of the collection.
// Photography –SIMON ARMSTRONG //
- Cottweiler as a brand continuously blur the lines between conventional gender attributes – screens can be seen as something non-gender
- Cottweiler often look at different perspectives and influences as references for collections – screens can represent layers and difference (not straight-forward)
- Screens also links with the macro trends that I am portraying in my look book– a camera screen, a screen that divides us, how technology has made us see the world through a screen, surveillance – how we can hide behind a screen and still see the world, links with privacy – we have screens in the forms of windows and doors to lock people out and let people in
HOW THE SUB-BRAND IS GOING TO REACH A NEW AUDIENCE
- Slightly cheaper garments – more accessible – however not too inexpensive as that will diminish the main brands luxurious brand codes
- Use of colour may intrigue people – more universal
- Possibly a younger audience due to its use of colours, young model promoting the sub-brand and its slightly cheaper garments
HOW THE SUB-BRAND IS GOING TO HELP ADVERTISE AND INCREASE EXPOSURE FOR THE MAIN BRAND
The sub-brand is going to be slightly cheaper, so the buyer does not have to make a huge investment before loving the brand; which will lead people to buy more of the main brand when they’ve established brand loyalty. This also means a wider audience will then promote Cottweiler as a brand which will make the brand more recognisable.
HOW THE SUB-BRAND IS RELATED TO THE MAIN BRAND / SAME IDENTITY
- Similar connotations and references such as the fetishisation of sportswear
- Aspect of unisex – however mainly menswear
- Still element of tailoring and luxury / good fabrics
- Similar photography in look-book
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE SUB-BRAND
- Unisex / same sex elements
- Keeping elements of Cottweiler’s use of whites, creams, and metallic’s but adding a touch of colour
- Slightly cheaper
- A way to increase knowledge of the main brand
- Cheaper fabrics and more basic cuts and tailoring – the basic cuts mean that its less tailored and therefore open to different builds / shapes and sizes
How the sub-brand would look on instagram
I have chosen to study and analyse Cottweiler for this project for a variety of reasons. Until I saw Cottweilers pieces in Machine A in Soho, I had no knowledge of the brands existence. The fabrics and the cuts of the garments surprised me as I hadn’t seen such luxurious sportswear before. From this I began to research the brand and found how the designers graduated from UWE and became successful through bringing elements of tailoring and luxury fabrics into sportswear. Through watching numerous interviews with the designers and discussions of the brand on YouTube, I started to have a real interest in the designer’s and brand’s ethos. The designers mention in numerous interviews how they want to keep Cottweiler “real” and how they “enjoy making the mundane look beautiful.” Dazed and Confused state how: “Cottweiler is London menswear’s most underrated label.”
Cottweiler is still a fairly new brand; only having a commercial break through in 2012. Therefore, I wanted to understand how it’s gaining followers and reaching an audience. Additionally, Cottweiler being a new brand means that I can explore meanings of development in terms of marketing and creating a sub-brand as the brand hasn’t explored a lot due to its short amount of time in the industry.
Furthermore, looking at Cottweiler as a sportwear brand is interesting as sportswear is making a come-back; “sales of sportswear, which includes items such as yoga pants and activewear, outpaced all other categories for the third year in a row, increasing just under 7% in 2016 and “causing growth in other categories to look rather tame in comparison,” Euromonitor noted.” “While performance sportswear is still the biggest part of that market, “sports-inspired is the category driving growth,” said Bernadette Kissane, Euromonitor’s apparel and footwear analyst. Indeed, activewear has become a huge part of everyday fashion over the past few years, and eaten into sales of regular clothes.”
// image from idolmag.co.uk //