is loving working with menswear. That much was clear from his visible pleasure as he tried on his samples. They fitted him perfectly, no surprise when he was insisting he only made things he wanted to wear himself. Sounds obvious enough, but you'd be surprised how often the disconnect between designer and design opens up a credibility gap, especially in menswear. Not here, though. In his first full collection for men, Saunders applied his design vocabulary—the engineered prints, the confident color palette, the modernist tendency —to such classics as a peacoat, a gab trench, and a striped shirt, but each of them was given an idiosyncratic twist. That shirt, for instance. The stripes were actually an engineered jacquard, so subtle that only the truly informed would recognize the feat. "It takes as much work to do that as a big jazzy print," Saunders said proudly.
While the outerwear worked an appropriately traditional palette of stone and tan, the designer added aqua accents for a Miami Beach effect. The same shade colored a suit and a parka. It made an interesting counterpoint to the collection's other visual flourish, a print that looked like Victorian wallpaper. It shouldn't have worked, but Saunders turned it into something so T-shirt-casual that it gelled well with the lean, clean lines of everything else, at the same time as it added an arts and crafts-y edge that reminded us of the designer's roots.