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Craig Green Shares a Glimpse Into His Creative World, in Polaroids

By Alice Newell-Hanson

 
 

The show’s “halo catapult sculptures,” as Green calls them, in development at his London studio.

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Pieces from Green’s first, neon-bright collaboration with Nike, hanging in the studio.

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Green’s colourblocked Nike sneakers riffed on the brand’s React Element 87 shoe.

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Green created these printed fabrics with what he calls his “Heaven and Hell 3D layer technique” and used them to construct garments “inspired by portals to a better place.”

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The view from the Ponte Vecchio, as the designer made his way to the Boboli Gardens for a set design meeting two days before the show.

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“We constructed a floating fabric wall installation in the Boboli Gardens,” says Green. “The design was based on the idea of blocking out an environment, attempting to make it look as if large sections had been removed from the garden — as if in a Photoshop-style cut and paste.”

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“The Duomo, on the morning of the show, en route to final fittings and castings.”

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The team made final preparations in a temporary studio space at the European Institute of Design. Here, the designer reviews the running order.

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Stonewashed and pigment-printed pieces from a series of looks inspired by workwear and uniforms, photographed on the morning of the show.

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The Fontana dell’Isola in the Boboli Gardens, where the brand hosted a reception before the show.

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Since launching his namesake label in 2012, the British designer Craig Green has thought about showing his collections alfresco. His team has scoured London for rooftops on which to display the brand’s technical, otherworldly men’s wear, “but then we get too scared in case it rains,” he laughs, “which it’s most likely to!” So, when Green received an invitation to present in Florence, as a guest designer at the Pitti Uomo trade show, the time seemed right to finally venture outdoors — to the 16th-century Boboli Gardens.

“The fact that they allowed us to show there, it was quite a surreal thing,” Green reflects. “We thought it would be interesting to see a collection in that environment because, at least outwardly so, it’s so opposite to some of the clothing that we show.” At the forefront of Green’s mind for the spring/summer 2019 season was the notion of perspective. “I always love that idea — I guess it’s a little bit like Cubism — where you’re trying to depict every angle of something on a 2D surface,” he explains. To that end, he created garments from overlaid printed fabrics, “moved ever so slightly off their axis,” to suggest shimmering alternate realities. In Florence, some of the models walked, among the gardens’ Renaissance statues and manicured hedges, wearing abstract sculptures that outlined their bodies, somewhat like halos.

We sent Green a Polaroid camera to document his preparations for the show, including the development of his first collaboration with Nike, on a range of Flyknit apparel and avant-garde sneakers. Below, he shares snapshots of the design process at his London studio and the final fittings in Florence. Showing his work there, he says, “was a once-in-a-lifetime moment.”