The LVMH Prize is one of the most prestigious fashion design competitions. It propels young designers in front of the eyes of the industry’s most powerful names, offering creative mentorship, financial support, and limelight. As we count down to the final ceremony on June 6, CR spotlights the nine finalists on this year’s roster.
Twenty-seven-year-old Charles Jeffrey is one of the most talked about names in fashion. Partly for his theatrical runways—which recall the avant-garde boldness of live performance and the personal candor of intimate, after-hour interactions—and partly for his over-the-top collection themselves, which subvert expectations of gender, sex, and even decade. For Fall 2018, for instance, the Glaswegian-born designer and former club kid threw bits of sculptor Claes Oldenburg into spectacular pieces with movement. “Theatrics are so intrinsic to my work it would feel weird if this was not a part of the collection,” Jefffrey explains to CR. “The work that [Oldenburg] produced—particularly that of the late ’60s—was a great inspiration. The idea that a body of work can come together as a happening really resonates with me!” Here, the designer shares more insight into his creative world.
You’ve been one of the youngest designers to show on the London fashion calendar. Has that affected the way you approach your work?
Youngest?! I feel pretty old now, although I think I will always be a teenager at heart! The great thing about London’s fashion scene is that there is a real sense of community. I’m friends with a lot of the designers—we are always looking out for each other.
Despite your avant-garde line, you have a somewhat traditional training in fashion—Central Saint Martins and at Christian Dior in Paris. How does that play into your practice?
I was at Central Saint Martins for nearly eight years, and Christian Dior for six months. Through these experiences I learned to appreciate that everyone approaches craft, design, and manufacture in different ways. I have seen dresses made by women who have been working in haute couture studios for over 40 years, but have also seen students creating dresses out of wood and staples. Working in these different environments has provided me with the tools I now use in my own studio.
Who are some muses—people, places, concepts—that have inspired Loverboy?
I held my first LOVERBOY club night at Vogue Fabrics in 2014, which was also my first studio. I hold this—alongside the Wallace Collection art gallery in London—very close to me. I adore Picasso—I recently saw a retrospective of his work and it was very uplifting. I also love Antonio Lopez and can’t wait to see his film at the ICA and delve deeper into his life.
What does club culture look like in 2018?
It’s all about the rebirth of rave, dancing underneath trees, and trekking long distances to find them.
PHOTOGRAPHS DAMIEN KRISL
FASHION JOANA DACHEVILLE
MAKEUP MAYIA ALLEAUME
MODEL DEE GLOVER AT WOMEN
CASTING DANTE + ONELL CASTING
SET DESIGN ELEONORA SUCCI
PRODUCTION HANNAH HUFFMAN
DIGITAL TECHNICIAN YOHAN BUREL
PHOTO ASSISTANT THOMAS CLODINE-FLORENT
FASHION ASSISTANT GLEN MBAN
MAKEUP ASSISTANT ELSA OLSON
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