Michael Hone graduated from LCF in MA Fashion Design Technology Menswear in 2016. He is in the process of setting up his label.
Can you tell us about your collection?
My collection is titled The Adonis Complex. The Adonis Complex is a muscle dysmorphic disorder colloquially known as “Bigorexia”. Muscle dysmorphic disorder is a chronic fear of being seen as too small and weak as mass culture often promotes those with a muscular physique as the hero, enforcing the idea that strength and morality are directly correlated to size of one’s muscles.
I looked at how modern society uses science and technology to create unachievable masculine bodies, with the use of synthetic drugs, surgery and genetic engineering, and also at the search for perfection in classic literature. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is an example of how in theory science can be used with best intentions yet create something undesirable.
I created a monstrous surreal vision of this idealistic, poisonous interpretation of masculinity and ultimate power, by extending the silhouette and features to the extreme. Shoulders are extended, bodies are covered with hair and identities are masked, so they are purely judged on their size and stature.
Where did you study prior to your MA at LCF?
I graduated from Birmingham City University in 2014, in BA (Hons) Fashion Design. The course gave me a strong foundation in design, pattern cutting and sewing skills, due to their excellent technical lecturers and staff, and clear feedback and support. I deferred an invitation to the LCF MA Menswear course to work in industry as a pattern cutter for a bespoke womenswear brand to earn money for tuition fees and improve my skills.
Reflecting back on your MA, and thinking of any prospective students thinking about starting an MA, what would be your top three tips/bits of advice to them?
I would suggest they plan everything, and keep themselves on a daily schedule, prioritising the most important tasks to complete that day.
I would also add that having contingency plans is important in case fabrics suddenly become unavailable, or your original intention cannot be achieved exactly as desired.
Listen to yourself and enjoy what you are doing. If you are not in love with what you are creating how can you expect anyone else to be?
What have you found the most enjoyable and interesting parts of your course? And what have you found the most challenging?
I like to research into an area I would otherwise have no knowledge about and create a design methodology, develop new silhouettes and garments ideas from this. Pattern cutting has always been a process that hugely interests me; creating garment pieces on paper, altering shapes and styles with a pencil, and then seeing this come to life in a three-dimensional garment through the therapeutic sewing process.
What I found interesting about this course was watching other students work and how they developed in different ways, and observing how their various previous experiences and cultures may have impacted the way that they worked.
The annual MA Show is an opportunity for young designers to launch their work into the industry. Disappointingly the judging panel decided against selecting my work to be presented. This has to some extent limited my media exposure, but I am still able to gain some industry contacts and help with careers and communications through LCF
I would say the most challenging part for me personally was with the realisation that my collection had not been selected for the LCF show but I accept the subjective nature of fashion and design and this set-back just gives me more determination to push the envelope in the creation of great fashion that impacts the senses.
What was your favourite thing about studying in London?
The access to culture and resources. I lived outside of London for the duration of the course and commuted in. Whilst it was only a 30-minute train ride away the difference is huge.
The ability to go to an exhibition 10 minutes away, find any fabric you need, find an abundance of hair extensions in any colour, or just buying milk at 3am is often forgotten by those who have it at their fingertips.
Describe your work in five words…
Innovative, Dramatic, Exciting, Powerful, Impactful.
What are your future plans and how do you think the course will help you to realise these plans?
I would love to be able to develop my own name within fashion as a designer. My more immediate plans are to work within a luxury, high end fashion house, who has award winning innovation within their menswear, further developing my skills and progressing my own design and technical abilities.