LFW Menswear day reviews #2: E.Tautz

Posted on 2nd March, by Colin Chapman in E.Tautz, London Fashion Week, menswear, menswear day. No Comments

Seven days ago today I was lucky enough to attend the E.Tautz menswear show during London Fashion Week. This season I have deliberately held back from rushing out posts as I wanted to savor what was a joyous day for menswear in London. And the E.Tautz presentation was certainly a highlight worth appreciating over time, as you would wish to linger over a mouthful of good wine before swallowing.

Despite the slight scrum and occasional fashion snarl at the over zealous ROH security staff, we were finally ushered up the plush staircase to the salon-like atmosphere of the aptly named Crush Room. Under the refined light from that now much-photographed chandelier the fashion weary crowd were soothed by piano music and the promise of elegance.

Patrick announced that he would not be talking through each look during this presentation (and judging by the swooning glances from at some of the audience, this would be regretted) but he did introduce the collection with some key ideas and influences.

E.Tautz believes in simple menswear made well he reminded us. “The Sweeney”, “Jack Regan” and “70s sportswear” were touchstones, as was Tautzy-related couturier Paul Poiret and the experience of a rare sunny day on the island of Mull had inspired the colour palette.  This focus on colour was evident throughout with a full, bloody, dark red being the predominant note. What followed was a collection of 20 looks based on separates that felt anything but, so coherent is the aesthetic at work here.

I include the full 20 looks as a gallery below but certain looks are worthy of individual attention:

The show opener was a beautiful raincoat lifted into high elegance by the delicious shade of mushroom, styled tone on tone with cotton trousers, socks and suede loafers.

Look 1:

Waxed cottons really shone in this collection for me: first seen in Look 4, a full length version made racy by a rich autumnal red, regally contrasted against beige cords.

Look 5 is mentioned here because of the astonishing colour. A vibrant English mustard wool coat, brought into contrast here by our fisherman friend and his fiery beard.

Look 7 showed the waxed cotton in another light: no-one creates a blouson quite like E.Tautz and this piece was fully unreconstructed Jack Regan.

Ahh, look no 9. Again the red plummy tones drew the eye, here into the depths of fine wool, accented perfectly by the red on grey checkerboard scarf, worn long with the scarf disrupting the traditional hemline of the blazer.

Look no 8 was another view of the waxed cotton, this time in a more conventional mid-length, possessing its own deep red warmth beneath the waxed surface but enhanced by both the striped sweater and the incredible richness of the trousers. As I look at the high res images here, the predominance of all these deep reds brings to mind raising a glass of amazing red wine to the light to check it’s exact tone.

Look 15 is notable for the use of a quilted waistcoat, a garment seen elsewhere on menswear day, here made regal through the contrast of red with a beige sweater, and suggesting an alternative to the options of overcoats and traditional suiting.

Finally, look 17 presents another example of Patrick’s genius with the blouson shape, here in (what else) a plummy burgundy.

I had in mind the manly swagger of 70s Britain from the moment the first model strode out and the overall show casting and styling were impeccable. [See Patrick putting the finishing touches to the boys’ looks via Swipelife here]. I loved the conjunction of rolled fishermen’s hats with such haute menswear pieces, and the choice of the two red-haired models, one ruggedly bearded, one mad scientist with eccentric hair and statement glasses. After all, how could the show reflect the colours of a Scottish island without the russet glow from at least a couple of ging-ers?

The ultimate punctuation was an extravagantly lapelled jacket in blazing Tautzy yellow. Before we knew it the room was applauding, and Patrick with typical attention to detail was pointing out the significance of the East India Tea Company tea in our goody bags, which apparently turns an amazing autumnal gold in the cup.

The E.Tautz presentation was welcome in so many ways: as an opportunity to escape the gaudy fuss of much of fashion week, to sit back and see some genuine elegance shot through with surprising use of colour and an adherence to quality and detail that is as rare as sunshine on Mull. And a chance to enjoy Patrick’s natural storytelling ability, framing the story of his clothes here with such wit and likeability.

Watch a full video of the presentation here.

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