Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Paul Galvin for Dunnes Stores

Normally I hear a lot of hype before a collab collection drops but the Paul Galvin for Dunnes Stores collection managed to sneak up on me somehow. Which is funny because I've been saying for a while that such a collection was exactly what Dunnes needed. With so many amazing designer collaborations in-house for homeware, kids and women, there was a space that was crying out for some seriously contemporary, cool menswear.

And now it has been filled. While the collection is distinctly a fashion forward departure for the brand when it comes to menswear and the pieces have urban, contemporary elements, it also presents solid, clean separates that are good quality and would fit into many a wardrobe. You don't have to be quite the urban warrior that Galvin has put forward in order to find something for you.

But if you want to be that warrior, go ahead!

See, the thing is, there's actually plenty of exciting stuff going on for menswear in Ireland but it often requires having access to a lot of capital - something which is especially daunting if you might be worried a snide remark or comment might prevent you from ever wearing something a little more daring again. This collection is a high street collaboration, admittedly on an upper scale of the high street, but is accessible for many nonetheless. And, while it's pushing in a different direction with the styling of the lookbook, some of the decorative accents and trims, silhouettes and pieces such as the cape-parka hybrid, it's not too far from the accepted to give your average Joe trying something new too difficult of a time.

Galvin himself states that he aimed to create something which is "not so much a clothing collection as a clothing movement" and which "represents new thoughts, new language, and hopefully a new direction for menswear in Ireland." Some might roll their eyes at such an ambitious claim but I'm very much on the same page. Let's level the playing field when it comes to clothing - if nothing else, it'll make commutes and walking down the street more interesting.

The "Vanguard", (which was chosen to capture the "spirit of the vanguard warriors, the risk takers, who led military movements from the front") title of the collection seems interesting as well, given the timing. 1916 commemorations are looming and are very much present in the popular mindset at the moment, giving many of us pause to consider our rather recent past and the struggle for independence as led by some of our greatest thinkers, warriors and heroes as well as a lot about the vast changes which have overcome our little island in the past century. While it's dangerous to think more adventurous menswear is anything close to synonymous with a bridging of the gap of inequality between men, women and everything between, it's still progress when freedoms of expression become more normalised. 

Outside my tangents into the symbolic and sociological elements of the collection, it's just damn wearable and cool and I'm even coveting some of the pieces for myself. The collection comprises of 21 styles and key pieces including an overcoat, bomber jacket, shirts, sweatshirts, tees, sweatpants, sweaters and footwear with prices from €25. It is available in selected Dunnes Stores and online and went on sale on Saturday the 17th of October (sorry about my delay in posting on it!).

Will any of you guys be picking any of the pieces up? What do you make of the collection?






(All images are courtesy, and property of, Dunnes Stores)


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