Graduating from the ever prestigious Royal College of Art in 2009, Matthew Miller has been a one-to-watch name ever since. He's shown for the past three seasons at London Fashion Week as part of Fashion East's Menswear Installation and in Paris at the British Fashion Council's London Showrooms. Focusing on the human form and how it interacts with digital software, Matthew is one of the few fashion designers out there who actually embraces modern technology; mix this with his signature sporty tailored aesthetic, intricate textile detailing and the result is a unique street-ready collection. No wonder all the stylists and editors are shooting it for their menswear fashion pages.
Matthew's A/W 2012 collection, aptly titled 0.05 Expedition
, transforms man-made and naturally formed patterns and textures into garment prints. From exploring the streets and parks on London, Matthew took a cue from the scenery and surfaces that can change through the seasons, for example a billboard with layers of ripped up adverts or the branches of a tree. It's these visuals and experiences that Matthew wanted the wearer to revisit even if the surrounding of the location has changed. Quick Response (that's QR to you and me) codes are no new invention but in recent years of smartphones, they've become almost as popular as barcodes on packaging and are used widely throughout advertising. But Mr Miller has integrated this two-dimensional barcode linking the garment to the location where the surface was photographed and turned into the print.
We chat to Matthew a bit more about the collection.What was the starting point of the use of QR codes?
I wanted people to interact with what I'd found, because with fashion, people usually interact with the end product. For me, I wanted people to interact with the research, which is where the collection started, so I guess it's about interacting with the surfaces in their original state. You can actually re-visit those surfaces (inspired the garments) and see what's happened to them since, and see how they've evolved. Because this is just collection only represents a moment in time, that has been captured through the prints.Could you tell me about about how took the locations and translated them into the prints?
What I did was I walked around London for around 2 months as a starting point. All my free time, evenings, saturdays, sundays, whatever spare time I had, I was walking and documenting the exact location. Making a note of what the print was, what it was like and will it fit together. And then it was about getting the right prints, because there are plenty of surfaces out there that don't fit together. So we needed that right balance of going from inner city surroundings to capturing the natural forms in trees in London, which people wouldn't expect. The prints that look the most 'outdoorsy' are in central London.Was there a focus towards natural settings/forms then?
No, i was pretty much taking in anything I saw. This is a bill board I found in Shoreditch which is all ripped, and since I've found it and used it for my collection, I've gone back and it's completely changed. So that's a good example of a moment in time that no-one can see again, but you can visit the location and see what's happened to it.What inspired the use of the compass in some of the pieces?
The compass was a device so you can revisit the garment's origins, although it's become obsolete with iPhone technology, it's still a necessary object to have to find your way around. It's more about the association with your childhood and how you used to go exploring. Did you explore a specific part of London?
Well I wish I had the time to explore the whole of London but it was just east London and Epping Forest for the collection, maybe I'll do north, west and south London for future collections, ha.
MAN SS12 by Matthew Miller
Location and research imagery by Matthew Miller
17:59 - 02/03/12
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