Graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2009, studying under famed Professor Louise Wilson OBE, van der Ham is part of an illustrious set of alumni currently dominating the UK fashion scene. The course has produced Christopher Kane, Mary Katrantzou, Jonathan Saunders, Richard Nicoll and Roksanda Ilincic -- to name just a few.
His first collection simultaneously confused and impressed critics, taking inspiration from Andy Warhol and working around a concept of deconstructing couture gowns and juxtaposing different eras of fashion in a single garment. This unusual collaging style, which often contrasts varying fabrics and techniques, has become van der Ham's signature.
Michael van der Ham A/W 2012 Collection
This season his collection was imbued with Hollywood glamour and a newfound exploration of knitwear. Using mohair and cashmere he demonstrated an evolving ability to monetize his collections, now creating clothes that are avant garde yet still extremely wearable. Inspired by Veronica Lake and the Ziegfeld Follies, the collection demonstrated a streamlining of ideas. His silhouettes stepped away from a previously prim feminine aesthetic into something more sultry. The effect was enhanced by a signature flash of red from the Louboutins, created especially for the collection, which were wrapped in antique jacquards. Fabrics and techniques were mashed together but instead of stylistic chaos there is now a haphazard elegance in what Michael van der Ham is doing. We can't wait to see what the future holds for this truly unique designer.
Text by Angelica Pursley for Crane.tv
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