Giles Deacon had the confidence to harness the best of British spirit with
relish and wit. In his debut collection, called Giles, he managed to marry a
slightly peculiar, uptight-seventies-lady lookall nipped-waist suits,
pussycat-bow blouses, and flowing printed gownswith homegrown English craft.
Deacon, 34, graduated from Central St. Martin's ten years ago with Hussein
Chalayan and has spent the intervening years freelancing, with stints at Bottega
Veneta and Gucci. So why choose London as a launchpad? "I live here. I love
it," he said. "There's such a lot going on here if you dig around."
Deacon's international experience shows in the polish of his
silhouettesand in the roster of supermodels (Nadja Auermann and Eva Herzigova among
them) who wore his precision-cut wide-shouldered jackets, pencil skirts, cashmere
tank tops, and fan-pleated skirts. That, plus the deliberately chosen
materialshand-loomed bespoke jacquards, custom-made psychedelic woodland prints
commissioned from the Glasgow School of Art, luxe Linton tweed from Scotland,
and leather accessories, molded into the shape of stag beetles by
artist-craftsman Justin Cappgave the show what Deacon calls "a slightly odd,
misplaced chicness." With its underlying thread of perversity (covered-up dresses
that showed intriguing flashes of garter and seamed stockings) and just a hint of
trippiness offsetting the very sensible, Deacon's collection put down a
marker for a new English look.