Henry Holland's first look out summed up the whole Spring collection: the skinhead uniform of buttoned-up shirt, suspenders, and bleached-out jeans recast in giddy cotton candy-colored chiffon and python. The bleach splatters looked little fluffy clouds.
He named the collection Pastel Punks, an idea sparked by Gavin Watson photographs of skinheads and punks in the late seventies and eighties. But Holland's rebellion is only against those who might put a damper on his raucously good time. It's been going on long enough for him to delve into his own heritage and revive the House of Holland tartan he had woven in his native Lancashire. Here it came in schoolgirl-y kilts and pinafores, turned naughty with Lurex string cardies and polos.
If anything, Holland's true talent is in finding ways to keep the good time going. His new underwear line launches at Selfridges at the beginning of next month, and today he introduced his own branded denim. (He had only done collaborations with Lee in the past.) Beyond the bleach, his spin for that crowded market is a multifunctional pair that zips from a full leg into above-the-knee shorts as well as into smoking-hot hot pants.
Holland's ideal customer, whom he describes as "a girl I'd like to hang out with," would try all three. For now, the HOH party train is slowing only to pick up more fans. The designer's sage assessment: "If it stops being fun, there won't be much of a House left."