For his Spring/Summer 2013 menswear collection, London-based designer Omar Kashoura claimed to have been inspired by the process of self-discovery and catharsis from civilisation that the Beat poets experienced while travelling through the arid landscapes of Nevada’s Black Rock desert. In order to stress the contrast between the savage nature and sophisticated urbanity, Kashoura chose the cosmopolitan environment of central London’s Christopher’s bar and its soothing earthy colours as the setting for the runway show.
Kashoura’s latest range for men was, in fact, anchored by an engaging attempt to investigate the dialectic duality between civility and wilderness that proved to be very successfully resolved at all stages. The male silhouettes were fitted and clearly followed formal tailoring techniques, and yet the garments could be worn in a fluid and relaxed manner. Similarly, the fabrics were simultaneously elegant and tactile, combining silks, linens, light cottons, and horse hair that was woven and used as a detail for collars and on footwear. The idea that civility could be diluted into nature was explored in the deconstruction of traditional menswear patterns and fabrics, with herringbones, check, and tweed existing only as digital printed versions of their originals in unusual pale shades.
The collection’s colour palette reflected the attempt to combine opposites by mixing earthy tones with richer shades: taupe, camel and cream were worn alongside burnt orange, navy and dark grey. Garments combined impeccable side buttoning and belts in jackets and blazers with pleated trousers and shorts, while stunning cotton knits shone through in yet another accomplished collection by this talented menswear designer.
Omar Kashoura graduated from the London College of Fashion in 2004 with a First class Honours degree for a highly acclaimed collection that secured the top prize of Best International Menswear Designer at New York’s Gen Art Style Awards in 2005. After graduation, Kashoura began his working career at London fashion house Preen before securing a consulting position at Unconditional. In 2006, he resumed his studies in fashion by enrolling in a Masters degree at London’s Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. After graduation, he set up his eponymous label and gained support from the Centre for Fashion Enterprise. Kashoura went on to win the prestigious Deutsche Bank Pyramid Award in 2008, has shown his collections in London and Barcelona fashion weeks, and has been given a New Generation Designer award by the British Fashion Council.
In addition to developing his own label, Omar Kashoura has been committed to developing external relations and collaborating with companies on new projects and events. Recent collaborations include working together on collections with Tween and Topman. Kashoura has recently been invited to be featured in Basics Fashion Design: Research and Design, a new academic design book published by AVA publishing and has been invited to show as part of a design collective exhibition for 2014 at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.