"The menswear is subtle this season," begins Matthew Harding. "It is very focussed," add Levi Palmer without a moment of silence. Just hours away from unveiling their autumn/winter 13 collection in a Thomas Bird crafted world inside Somerset House, the label’s collective voice could not have been more entwined or clear. From their home and studio base in Rickmansworth the design duo work tirelessly on their quest for intricate perfection to that oft neglected and taken for granted garment, the shirt. Since its accomplished debut in September 2011, palmer//harding have created men’s and women’s collections that encompass the combined aesthetic, passion, skill and international experience of the design duo. Ever learning, tweaking, evolving and improving, there's a real sense of masterful ease with this collection. A quiet confidence weaves throughout wonderfully tactile and perfectly sculpted shirting made from the finest cotton from Cotton USA.
"Going against so many young designers where there's an increasing sense of more, more, more, we have reduced and re-evaluated how many pieces we needed to tell the story of the season. There's a nice romance to the menswear," adds Harding. Less really is more. Ludwig Mies van der Rohe would look on, cigar in hand and fall for the considered cotton charms of this collection.
"It all started with the a single drape which reminded Matthew and I of the pages of a journal. From this concept we moved forward by referencing the memories that one keeps in the pages of their journal. In this method we brought forward the memory of the pattern cutting from the pages of one shirt into a top stitching detail on the next shirt where the previous pages had been placed. In this way a single shirt reflects the entire capsule collection in even just a small way, a subtle hint to the details which came before and which occurs after. " Levi Palmer.
The beauty of palmer//harding's menswear narrative is in the details. "With the womenswear it is all about texture and for the menswear it is all about the details," begins Harding, "there's so much to see on closer inspection this season." Like any much loved and used journal, this collection is full of secrets that you'll long to discover .