I have personally always admired Christopher Raeburn for his extremely innovative yet sustainable approach to his work. Seven years on after establishing his name from perfecting the upcyling of used parachutes, Raeburn draws inspiration from the oceans for his AW18 collection- IMMERSE. This season he focuses on protecting both the wearer and the planet as he pushes boundaries with the use of pioneering materials such as protective neoprene immersion suits and Royal Air Force helicopter winchman coveralls. He also uses Russian and Danish Naval blankets as well as having reworked his iconic parachute pieces thus, truly embracing the 4 R’s (REMADE, REDUCED,RECYCLED, RAEBURN).
Aquarium hues of blues, greys, black, submarine yellow and winchman orange grace the catwalk. Distinctive Raeburn tape, toggles, emergency whistles and waterproof zips all add a unique flare to the brand’s casual-luxe aesthetic. A show-stopping piece for me is the reworked coverall with an open chunky zip asymmetrically placed across the body almost mimicking a shark gill. More sea life can be found among the pieces as a giant squid is used as the official AW18 mascot and used additional tags and zip charms.
Raeburn emphasises his passion for quality and longevity as he continues with multiple partnerships. He collaborates with Blackhorse Lane Ateliers to produce a high quality organic denim jean and reversible over-shirt. He also continues work with Palladium to create a series of functional footwear whereas his newest collaboration with cold-water surf brand Finisterre is a first, creating a range of functional outerwear, knitwear, tees and accessories. His statement rucksacks are recreated from original RAF helicopter emergency packs with the help of Royal College of Art Designer Nikiesha Nelson.
Christopher Raeburn sets an amazing example for the rest of the industry as he continues to make a difference in the industry. With a continuing demand for clothing, he exemplifies how clothes can last and what we can all do to ensure waste is kept to a minimum whilst ensuring clothes are inspiring just as well as sustainable.
Words: SHANNA BENT | @miss.bent
Images: EDWARD RIVERA | @edwardrivera_