MEET | Feb 20, 2024

Last February, Luke Derrick caught our attention when he was featured on the London Fashion Week’s digital schedule as part of the DiscoveryLab initiative, merely a year after showing his Central Saint Martins graduate collection. Now, his contemporary tailoring brand makes its much-anticipated debut with a physical presentation as part of the British Fashion Council’s NewGen programme!

We asked the designer 10 questions to find out more…

Describe your AW24 collection in 3 words…
Unseen London Elegance.

Name one person, living or dead, that you would want to wear the collection.
Ryuichi Sakamoto – RIP.

What's your favourite piece and why?
The trousers. “Effortless” things are usually unbelievably grindy to get right, and indeed they were.

Which piece took the longest to perfect?
I wanted to write something aggrandising about the tailoring cuts being developed over the last two years here, but after a poll in the studio, said trousers have won by unanimous vote. I’m not sure how I feel about this.

What are your pre-show rituals?
Other than generally not sleeping much, I can’t say. This is my debut, so no habits, rituals or vices have been developed yet. Try me again next season.

What are your fashion week essentials?
Whatever keeps my battered iPhone running to answer emails. I usually have a spare USB cable or two in a cargo pocket these days.

How will you celebrate when the show is over?
I have absolutely no idea; the idea of time itself post-show is completely alien. There might, however, be Campari involved.

What are your highlights from 40 years of London Fashion Week?
40 years of a guidebook of how to do it differently. An invitation and mandate to innovate and question the zeitgeist. London expects.

What is it about London that continues to energize your creativity?
There is a tacit, cerebral richness of scattered cultures and histories hidden in the cracks of everything that invite you to form new perspectives every day. It might not wear its history as beautifully on its sleeves as Paris or Rome, but there’s something in the air that invites you to contribute to it or to question it, rather than pay homage to it like said continental capitals. It’s a city in a perpetual state of re-invention, and it feels like it wants you to take part in that change.

What drives you to keep making clothes?
As something of a serial obsessive, I just find that each aspect of the design process appeals to loads of different itches and interests that I have on a day-to-day basis. I very much have interests beyond fashion, but fashion just so happens to have so many internal processes and ways of thinking that you’re always on your toes.

In research, there is a near infinite depth within menswear and of codes, semiotics, and concealed narratives that are endlessly rich and totemic of wider human history and culture. I nerd out pretty hard learning about new things. There is a real luxury in being able to be curious as part of a professional process.

In design, it’s a slightly different bit of my brain that’s exercised in finding solutions to things and ideation. I enjoy making concepts around fabrics, particular garments I might be wearing heavily on rotation, or maybe trying to find hidden contemporary elegance in something quite banal or archaic. Pattern cutting is a different kind of headspace again, and one I’m trying to learn to find its own kind of elegance in – the kind that of elegance that people would use to describe a good chess ending. It’s hard sometimes, but when there’s a flash of something special it can be quite beautiful.

In realising a show, it’s the strange and rarified ability that fashion has in creating narratives, telling stories, creating theatre that responds to the world we live in. Making clothes for me is all these things.