SS Daley takes the story to the catwalk

For Spring / Summer 2023, designer and LVMH award winner Steven Stokey-Daley of SS Daley drew inspiration from the love letters between authors Vita Sackville-West and Violet Trefusis with a wonderful theatrical catwalk at the St. Pancreas Renaissance Hotel from London.

Daley is much more than an exceptional designer, he is a storyteller and he came across his “Vita” show, where the cast of the National Youth Theater read excerpts from love letters surrounded by floral arrangements inspired by the Sackville-West garden. at Sissinghurst Castle.

On the inspiration behind his SS23 collection, Daley explained in the notes of the show: “In their letters there is a sketch of Vita and Violet arm in arm, traveling around the south of France. They are all in black, Life in a Tuxedo, and it is this moment of contact in which the tone of their letters is increasingly sad, when they cannot be together. The emotion of that moment fills the entire collection “.

Image: SS Daley SS23

For the collection, Daley continued to highlight his exploration of privilege and power today, challenging the British class system, while also offering new genderless pieces. Highlights included cotton twill utility sets printed with floral patterns, Calico shirts printed with 1920s seed packet illustrations, and a merino wool sweater embroidered with an image of a Sackville-West garden shed as if it had been found on a Wedgewood bone china plate.

LVMH award winner Steven Stokey-Daley presents the SS23 collection at LFW

Image: SS Daley SS23

Other standout looks included sheer voile pleated shirts, wide leg corduroy pants, balloon sleeve blouses with botanical prints, and silk short sleeve shirts printed with Daley’s photos of his bedroom wall, where a tapestry hangs on striped wallpaper. Daley also made patchwork pieces with commemorative dishcloths, including shirts and bags, which marked his earliest accessories.

There was also a bunny theme running through the collection, inspired by letters, with jersey long sleeve muscle tops embroidered with the words “Bunny Boy”, while other models wore bunny ears and some had mustaches painted on their faces. . In addition, there was a full trench coat printed with a 1700’s engraving of a hare and a cotton polo shirt with two hares dancing on the front.

Image: SS Daley SS23

This season also included a collaboration with Dan Levy’s DL Eyewear. There are two key frames, one rounded and the other square that play with 20th century English eyeglass figures from across the class gap. While the footwear was made for the designer by Malone Souliers, including lace-ups, tassel loafers and slip-on models.

While the collection stood out for its craftsmanship and design, the highlight had to be the casting. It was great to see a menswear designer use a diverse cast with models of all shapes and sizes to showcase his collection.

Image: SS Daley SS23
Image: SS Daley SS23
Image: SS Daley SS23
Image: SS Daley SS23

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