Manifesto: John Varvatos SS16

On the back of his latest collection, US designer John Varvatos explains his decision to move the catwalk show from Milan to New York

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For me, the decision to move our fashion show back to New York wasn’t an immediate one. I’ve been showing at Milan for nearly eight years now and we’ve got a great relationship with city. But I’m an American designer; we’re an American brand and New York City is my home, so we thought it was the right moment to come back.

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From a business standpoint, it wasn’t an easy decision to make. I opened a store in my hometown of Detroit in the spring and we received such an overwhelmingly positive response that it really made me think about moving the fashion show back home for the inaugural New York Fashion Week: Men’s.

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This collection draws on the early 1970s bohemian SoCal music scene. It was a time when there was an influx of British rock stars such as Fleetwood Mac, Jimmy Page and Keith Richards, who brought their iconic flamboyance and dandy-informed style to Southern California.

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This distinct meshing of lifestyles created something entirely new, the results of which could be felt as deeply as the saturated melodies of the greatest albums released at this time. It is this vintage aesthetic that we have sprinkled over the edges of our classic John Varvatos DNA for the season. While we’ve kept the clothing timeless and without a rigid theme, I’m pleased that the end result has got that vivid charisma of early 70s rock’n’roll.