When Gareth Pugh complained, a year ago last spring, that despite healthy press attention and consistently crowded shows he had yet to sell a single dress, one couldn’t help but wish British avant-garde fashion icon Isabella Blow had lived long enough to champion this young, somewhat nutty designer. Blow could have demonstrated that it is entirely possible to wear Pugh’s rather out-there ideas (water wings, Perspex chain mail, and fabrics made from condoms and balloons) to, say, lunch. Until recently, the Central Saint Martins graduate (class of 2003) wasn’t much concerned with wearability; his work was conceptual, exploring and distorting the human form. This season, however, Pugh left London to show in Paris. It’s where the serious business is. Unpack this spring’s dynamic, robo–Queen Elizabeth looks and there are some wearable, even minimalist pieces.
First pet: A budgie, Hoppy.
Favorite childhood toy: A rocking horse my grandpa made.
Worst vice: Staying up way too late; bedtime is circa 2 a.m.
Favorite song: “Daddy Cool,” by Boney M.
Favorite book: Manhood, by Michel Leiris.
Favorite season: Fall: fur-and-sunglasses weather.
Color you can’t resist: Black, of course.