As you enter the industrial white brick basement in the heart of the trendy Carnaby shopping district, you are immediately greeted with the freshest talent at Margin. The first room is dedicated to up and coming labels who are attending Margin for the first time, while the second room holds regular contributors to the show who stand out for having unique twists to their collections. As one of the smaller London trade fairs, the intimate setting gave the show a relaxed and friendly atmosphere with press from directional magazines and buyers looking for the next big thing mingling with the enthusiastic labels.
Margin London is a trade fair which provides a platform for the latest designers and brands on the upscale streetwear scene to showcase their collections to the press and potential buyers, with many attending their first show. With designers from around the world participating, Margin demonstrated global talent at its quirkiest and most inventive. There was everything from kitsch laser cut jewellery to bags masquerading as speakers for your I pod, to two-in-one embellished sneakers which morph from a hi-top baseball shoe to a sandal: ideal for the frugal traveller.
A strong focus at the show was the use of clothing as canvases for graphics and illustrations, with many creators coming from backgrounds in graphic design rather than fashion. Some labels revived iconic and nostalgic images to adorn their wares while others sourced artwork from the newest and most original image makers on the scene. Influences came from a wide range of popular culture elements such as music, graffiti, character design, Japanese street fashion and comic books to name a few. Screen printed T-shirts with clever designs sat alongside retro prints and silhouettes interpreted for the contemporary market. Many labels originated from foreign waters and had developed traditional cultural aesthetics into modern streetwear, with a sense of national pride and global appreciation coming into play.