What contemporary Swedish brand CMMN SWDN lacks in vowels, it certainly makes up for with innovation. Fusing classic tailoring with progressive sportswear, the AW15 collection was a fearless clash of 1990s Giorgio Armani and Manchester youth sub-culture – an odd, but ultimately compelling concept, thanks to the strength of its execution.
Sports references abounded, from the staging (a floodlit section of football pitch) to the neon ‘go faster’ stripes and twisted colour-contrast seams adorning beautifully tailored staples. Tangerine, cobalt and white accents brought zingy freshness to a subdued palette of charcoal and black, particularly the recurring orange-on-black grid pattern, which cleverly referenced a football goal net.
Where the concept really shone, though, was with the juxtaposition of fabrics: denim – traditionally associated with blue-collar workers – and pinstriped wool, the sartorial choice of bankers and businessmen. Raggedly bonded together on trousers, jackets and overcoats, they gave the impression of “scratching the surface of an Armani suit and finding a working-class Manchester lad beneath’ – as co-founder Emma Hedlund put it. Those conceptual layers were also reflected in the styling, with buttoned-to-the-neck white shirts layered under leather biker jackets and topped with classic wool overcoats.
Driving home the ‘90s references, models were shod in Doc Marten brogues with trousers rolled or tapered at the ankle to show off ribbed white sports socks. Meanwhile the brand’s signature piece, a bomber jacket, found its ultimate expression in a windowpane check, satin finish complete with matching trousers.
Written by Selena Schleh. Images © CMMN SWDN.