As previously noted, for his sophomore collection, emerging talent Mohsin Ali researched industrial designers and architects such as Zaha Hadid, Otto Wagner, Charles Eames, Le Corbusier and there approach to design. From the line drawings and sketches of Hadid which inspired the lines of the shirts and jersey to the way Wagner, Eames and Le Corbusier mixed fabrications and techniques across their products. Taking all of this and more into account, Ali approached this collection with his belief in a very clean aesthetic, the mixing of fabrication and the use of innovation. The season also showcased an exciting collaboration with luxury luggage brand Globe-Trotter, whereby the blossoming design talent created (with the help of Globe-Trotter's master craftsmen) three different cases with a design finish that complimented SS12 perfectly. In the tumultuous seas of spurious, pointless and head scratchily strange collaborations this was a coming together that made complete sense. As the cases arrive in store, we couldn't resist taking another longing look at them and snapped up the opportunity to catch up with Ali.
Now, Globe-Trotter cases have been used over the last one hundred years by an enviable client list. From Captain Robert Falcon Scott travelling with Globe-Trotter on the infamous Antarctic expedition in 1912 to Sir Winston Churchill using a Globe-Trotter Dispatch Case during his position as Chancellor of the Exchequer in 1924, H.R.H. Queen Elizabeth II opting for Globe-Trotter for her honeymoon luggage in 1947 (and continues use her cases to this day) to Sir Edmund Hilary ascended to first base camp with Globe-Trotter during his conquest of Everest in 1953, it is truly special and instantly recognisable luggage. Hand made in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire using original manufacturing methods, each case is uniquely constructed from vulcanised fibreboard whilst handles are produced by the leather team who also form the iconic Globe-Trotter corners over a period of five days. Here, Ali builds on this experience to create a limited edition range of super luxe luggage for a modern gentleman. Each case has been intricately laser etched to produce a subtle patterned effect, and is completed with a unique leather shoulder strap. These key features set the Mohsin Ali suitcases apart from the Globe-Trotter core collection. Mohsin Ali hand picked a subtle range of colours of Elephant Grey, Ivory and Navy, creating timeless classics to covet for years to come.
"From a young age I've always loved structured cases especially the briefcase, for me it is a very underrated accessory. Now, Gary Bott the Creative Director is someone I've known for a while and always respected him within the Industry, we constantly would meet and talk about what we may or may not be able to do together. I'm constantly questioning manufacture and process to what is possible and what extreme something can be pushed to before it becomes impossible, from this the collaboration was born. The starting point was what can and can't be done, this took a while after which it just came together! told the case and it's dimensions couldn't be changed so it came down to the appliance.
I had to be true to my aesthetic but also what I was doing for SS12 with the Men's collection and somehow forming a relationship between the two, there was a pattern that was being laser cut into one of the jackets and after numerous trials we came up with laser engraving it onto the cases, but that wasn't enough I needed another angle. The "FUNCTION' angle, I had a beautiful handmade case with this great engraving......what was it missing? I remember Gary telling me the designer had developed a Handmade leather strap and I knew this would be the finishing touch, especially on the small 13" inch Case as without it it looked feminine..."
Mohsin Ali on the collaboration
Mohsin Ali's aesthetic is clean and contemporary, and his label lives by three rules; form, fabric and function. This ethos is similar to that of Globe-Trotter, whose suitcases are handmade using Victorian machinery in a process that has remained unchanged in the in exactly the one hundred and fifteen year history. If you like the above, you'll be pleased to hear that this successful collaboration will continue on to AW13. "I've worked on new colours and patterns again relating to Mohsin Ali AW13. Also being quite a purist when it comes to certain things I've done a 12" inch record box this season!"