Dear Shaded Viewers and Diane,
Nasir Mazhar’s “notion of normal” you won’t find it in a Gap campaign. But that’s a shame: because normality, in clothing terms, is almost as multifarious a concept as that of fashion itself – and if there was anything to learn from the whole normcore moment in 2014, was that while striving away from it at all times might wear you down, the occasional embracing of a normal attire is not as tragic as we had once believed. And for a designer who grew up, as the show notes slightly romanticize, “in a diverse working class community in London’s East End”, this new collection could indeed be all that a capsule wardrobe for the winter should. Of course, up-close, the quality of the craftsmanship would well be different, the nylon softer, less crispy, more fluid through the movements and perhaps we wouldn’t hear that tell-tale swish that cheaper synthetic fibres sometimes do with friction. Nonetheless, a Nasir Mazhar model, with his puffed up outerwear and the matching waxy black and blue tracksuits, which, granted, might look rather glossy under the runway’s spotlights but just imagine them out in the street in a typically foggy November afternoon: he wouldn’t seem out of place in my neighbourhood half as much as many other outfits we’ve seen. With kudos to a casting always so sharply on point, this is what London’s guy-next-door hopes he looks like.