>> When I first received the line-up for Selfridges' 2013 Bright Young Things project, one word sprung to mind – tasty. I've been covering this young talent initiative since Selfridges first started it back in 2011 and this year, it's bigger and better, stuffed with concept, creativity and more importantly physical product to get your teeth into. With fifteen Bright Young Things – a mix of womenswear, menswear and accessories designers, set designers and one lone food pioneer – the number has clearly been edited down to concentrate on developing and buying in product for the department store. That's the true sign of a retail powerhouse getting behind young talent.
I'll be doing a detailed run down of the designers, the windows, the in-store events which Selfridges have got lined up and all the products tomorrow but for now, I thought I'd give a sneak taster, not least because I'm ever so excited at the prospect of Sadie Williams' "Disco Dalek" (¬© Alex Fury) dresses roaming around town. Williams was one of the top stand-out graduates from this year's Central Saint Martins MA crop, with her collection of floor length lurex bonded dresses inspired by Japanese biker gangs. That collection has been simplified into shorter dresses and lurex front sweatshirts. I got to try on the printed dress this weekend to see how it would feel to wear what is essentially a fancy Quality Street wrapper with brilliantly rigid proportions. It was glorious. Like an United Visual Artists light installation in dress form. Despite having to sit down ever so gingerly and nearly wacking over a cup of tea with its sticky-outy shape, I didn't want to take it off. I have no choice but to ponder whether I could do without a new bathroom and spank a grand instead on what I consider to be a collectible masterpiece.
I also copped a feel of other BYT products, a lot of which are online already (with more still to come) such as miliner Keely Hunter's simple but effective perspex headbands, jewellery designer Grace Hamilton's knotted necklaces and LCF graduate Yeashin's fusion of 60s swinging London and traditional Korean costume. The upshot is that Selfridges have one upped on their previous BYT efforts with a product range that gives them the edge in British talent scouting in amongst the London department stores. Check back for the bumper BYT post tomorrow night.