Strange Sightings | London Collections: Men

  • Freya Hill

If weird happenings were to occur anywhere in the fashion industry, it’s at Fashion Week. All hail paper wigs and Vivienne Westwood 9inch platforms that caused Naomi Campbell to crash down in 1993.

Designers go to extremes during collection previews in the hope that fashion followers will talk (and tweet). Their aim is that the stranger/more striking/absolutely over the top items paraded down the catwalk will get masses of media attention and thus raise brand awareness. It’s a smart tool to success but one that models are sometimes reservedly dragged into. After all, it’s them who’ve got to wear it!


Cast your eye down the AW 2014 London Collections: Men catwalks and you’ll soon see that male models don’t escape the drama. Splattered across the papers this week is JW Anderson’s famed gender blurring designs, loafers with pretty bows, male clutch bags and chunky wedge shoes. The Mail Online’s headline caught the public’s attention in a split second, ‘Male models take to the catwalk in HEELS’ and now everyone’s talking about it.

If you are a model, you can’t be fazed by this style of fashion. Models, especially catwalk models, need to be open-minded and willing to wear anything thrown their way (we’ve seen lobsters dangled over heads before). Models arrive at work as a blank canvas and are employed to show off any garment, accessory, and item regardless of whether it’s something they’d wear in the street.

The same goes for the hair, boys. Take part in high street catalogue work, commercial or mainstream modelling and the chances are you’ll have it brushed and finished off with a bit of hairspray. Include yourself in the madness of fashion week and oh, you’ll soon realise that those styles were so last year. There’s a huge difference between catwalk modelling and commercial/catalogue modelling and it’s important you know about both before taking the venture on. We can offer you as much knowledge and advice as you like in person, or you can get started now by logging onto our website for a full introduction.

This season, Alexander McQueen stunned us suitably. Who saw the rough and ready wet look hair? We say wet look, it was actually damp, as in models just had their heads soaked with water. (Cast your mind back to the last time you got caught in a rainstorm and felt pretty chilly thereafter, now pretend you’re being employed to look like that for a handful more hours. Yes, catwalk modelling’s tough.) During the shows we also saw fringes that were splattered across the face and heads that were finished with black crow’s feathers.

GQ named ‘The Middle Part’ (centre parting) as an ‘Avoid it’ trend for the everyday man, but it didn’t stop design teams sending it down the runway. Also on their weird and wonderful hit list was the blue headed men at James Long – we believe they wore wraps over their hair, although from a distance it looked like blue paint – still, the boys walked professionally, and Katie Eary allowed Mickey Mouse face masks to take centre stage.

To finish the madness off, UK Models spotted gold face casing at Nasir Mazhar, silver lips at Man and metallic headwear over white and grey painted bodies at KTZ.

If you didn’t believe us first time around that catwalk models have to be open minded, you will now. And, whilst we’re offering advice, let us warn you that this is an extremely competitive sector to break into.

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Posted by Freya Hill

Freya is been writing for many years on fashion and modelling. Her hands are a bit too wrinkly for a 23 year old and she has worked with MTV, New Look and Vauxhall Fashion Scout.