Stefan Cooke is the namesake brand headed by himself and Jake Burt. The label first showed at London's MAN in Fall 2018, and have swiftly established themselves as championing a new breed of delicate, emotive menswear. With Cooke's advanced textile experimentation and Burt's mastery of silhouette, the duo upends the hard masculinity of classic British menswear with novel shapes and subversive fabrication. Classic hard wearing garments are stripped of their structure when their image is printed on stacked elastic bandages, creating a trompe l'oeil effect that contrasts implied hardness (of say, an image of denim jeans) and the soft, body-hugging straps. The opposite holds true, with ordinary men's shirting carrying a new, more feminine energy when printed with an image of antique dresses.
Cooke also often takes from the quotidian (crafts, objects, garments) then flips them on their head to recontextualize and recast them in a new light. The most famous example is their button chainmail, using perhaps one of the most ordinary objects to create a textile with a couture atmosphere and compelling contrast between 'boring' and visionary.
Then there is this lozenge coat, from their Fall 2018 debut show. Adopting the shape of a traditional mac coat, its drama lies in the arduously constructed fabric, featuring lozenge-shaped panels stitched together at their tips. When still, the panels lie flat against the body but they bely an intense dynamism when the wearer moves. The panels flare open with movement and tension, in response to the wearer. Through the empty space one can see what lies underneath, in a sense bridging literal and emotive openness.
Made in the UK 10/10 Condition, new with tags
Fit Notes: Tagged size M but fits narrow in the shoulders. Best for size S or slim M