From the moment we first looked through their kaleidoscope back in 2010, Agi&Sam have dazzled, delighted and most importantly developed season after season. Ever pushing the other forward, the print princes soon graduated from their starring roles inside the Fashion East Installations on to the stage of MAN and now stand at the forefront of all that is exciting about London Collections: Men. Despite winning plaudits and stockists alike with their vivid prints, eye for colour and particular sense of humour, the design duo continue to refine and mature. For Autumn/Winter 2013 they will take another leap forward.
Given that we're only a few hours away from the show, we couldn't resist diving headfirst in to their heady cocktail of inspirations before sampling from the smörgåsbord of the familiar with the surprising. From the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air to the Day of the Dead, 80s detectives to the eve of the apocalypse, we're used to wandering the disorientating landscape of their shared mishmash mind. For their latest concoction, Agi&Sam were drawn to the eccentric world of the Marquess of Bath, wandered the rooms of stately homes and admired the soft furnishings whilst daydreaming about David Hockney before duly reimagining their own English aristocracy. Here, the duo allow us to press our eyes against their latest well crafted kaleidoscope and talk us through the mood board...
"We were looking at The Marquess of Bath and Longleat and bohemian Detmar Blow. We were sucked in to his colourful world of eccentricities, from his seventy 'wifelets' that live around his estate who fight over his affections to his own style and the furnishings of the home. The first time I encountered him was on the Grayson Perry documentary, In the Best Possible Taste but I'm sure that Sam had mentioned him a few times beforehand. We actually had the idea of exploring a British heritage collection before our last autumn/winter season but we had to hold off until it felt right. Now it does. We looked at the stately homes of the aristocracy and the different roles played within them. There have been shifts in how the aristocracy have dressed but we were drawn to different elements from each era. We tend not to take anything too literally. Coming from our different backgrounds, our inspirations are always a constant mix of things that come together to create Agi&Sam..." Agape Mdumulla
We really stepped it up with the tailoring this season to make sure it is on point. It's always a development process but we really pushed ourselves this season. We're not competitive people but we always want to out do ourselves each season and improve on the last. From spending a lot of time on the little things like the fusing, finding the right canvas and the finishing on the inside including the labels, everything had to be as good as it can be. Now, we've become known for our loud prints but we wanted to tone it down this season. We've probably created more prints than ever but they are more subtle and hopefully that little bit more wearable alongside the more plain pieces. Also, it was great to return to more hand drawn prints and we had fun subverting traditional ones. Many prints appear quite small from a distance but really pop in the styling. There is so much detail this season from pocket squares to engraved tie pins - there are so many more finishings. The collections is bright and colourful but in a more mature way." Sam Cotton