On the invitation to Christopher Shannon's Spring show was an image from James Pearson-Howes' series "British Folk," about, in the words of the photographer, the "darker, more obscure cultural traditions that persist in the U.K." In the picture, a man kitted out like some kind of Abominable Scarecrow trips through a scad of normally dressed locals in a U.K. town somewhere or other. "I think that guy's called the Idiot," Shannon said by way of explanation backstage after the show. "It's basically a drunken race."


The shapes of the pieces themselves were rather conventional, as Shannon admitted backstage. They're elasticized shorts, collared shirts, polos, and jean jackets, kept simple, he insisted, because he wants them to be worn so. And according to one of his retailers, seen grinning his way out the show, that, for all their manic energy, is what keeps them selling briskly. His boys may have lost their heads, but he's got his.