In an industry dominated by production and marketing, many long for a return to fashion which strikes more emotional chords than commercial. Enter Craig Green. In a relatively brief timespan, the British menswear designer has garnered acclaim for his steady offering of homegrown beauty and ceremonial ventures. Green’s creations under his namesake label, established in 2012, helped etched a niche for the designer amongst menswear’s unique talents. His ability to engage and challenge the concept of utilitary and uniformity has earned him both commercial and critical prosperity and a cult-like fanbase to boost.
As part of his studies at Central Saint Martins, Green interned under Walter van Beirendonck during his studies, which has aged into a pivotal point in Green’s creative bud. Taking notes from Walter’s loud and bashful style, Green learned to speak up and voice out his wildest ideas, embracing the fun and multi-disciplinary side of fashion. “Walter taught me that it is important not to compromise and that fashion can come from anywhere and anything.”
Green’s creativity often transcends fashion through the creation of a dialogue between the sensuality of the bodies and the intricacies of the mind. Believing that a fashion show has to be a spectacle, he often sends over-the-top architectural objects onto the runway, leaving the audiences scrambling to decipher the abstract narrative that he pushes out. For his FW13 BA graduation collection, the models dawned splintered wooden planks as masks, providing an additional depth of texture on top of the heavily layered pieces that were made out of a variety of materials. While it was praised by insiders citing it as a breath of fresh air, the Daily Mail mocked the fashionable scrap materials, blasting the show with the headline ‘What a Plank!’ With regards to naysayers, Green remains persistent in his belief, noting that “it’s a positive thing to split opinions, and he needs to challenge and push things or otherwise there’s nothing new for people to see.”
Upon a close inspection of his relatively short lifespan as a designer, the overarching idea of uniforms seems to bleed into every single season. His culturally rich milieu empowers him to reinterpret and insert elements from quotidian uniforms into his present designs. Religion is also a recurring theme that Green explores too. He connects religion to workwear, seeing that they share the concept of being in the same group, working together, wearing the same attire to achieve a common goal. Despite them serving different purposes - one spiritual and one functional, Green always manages to present the intricate synapses between them in the form of garments. No matter the collection or theme, Green’s clothes are always illustrated through deeply conceptualised and ceremonious processions which often leave his audience in a stir of emotion and his customers yearning for his creations.