This season Costume National asked Sergei Sviatchenko from Close Up And Private to give his take on the AW11 collection. The result is “The Beetles News”. A mix of photography and collage the projects takes its inspiration from a Beatles performance in Milan back in 1965. The subject matter comes as no surprise because when we first featured the wonderful detail shots that Close Up And Private is now known for, the lens was focused on Sviatchenko's sartorial homage to the fab four. Shortly after the news of the collaboration arrived in our festive filled inbox, we asked the artist to reveal his treasured item. Fittingly, his choice of a bespoke flannel suit has a connection with Liverpool's finest...
Sergei Sviatchenko and the bespoke flannel birthday suit
"My most cherished wardrobe item is a bespoke flannel suit, made at Westbourne House. The suit was designed by Paul Smith and made by Christopher Tarling.
Now, I first met Paul many years ago when I visited London and explored Notting Hill in tremendous rain. I sought shelter from the torrential downpour in Westbourne House, one of Paul Smith stores in London. By chance, I came to talk to Paul and he later drove me back to my hotel. Since this encounter, we have met at many of his shows in Paris, London and Milan. It has developed into a very interesting relationship.
When I turned fifty, Paul designed a birthday suit for me. Given that I am such a big fan and collector of The Beatles, the lining was based on the cover of their album "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" Inside the pocket there is a hand written note that simply reads, "Happy Birthday from Paul." There is only one suit like this." Sergei Sviatchenko
As I'm sure you are all aware, Close Up And Private is an on going project by Sviatchenko which looks to capture the spirit of modern style, as seen through the subtle shades of the individual. We have long been admirers and love the project celebrates classic details alongside contemporary looks through a unique form of photographic documentary. After all, the real beauty of menswear is in the details and this series celebrates them daily.