Fashion and design studio Eley Kishimoto has collaborated with tailor Timothy Everest and graphic design firm New Future Graphic to produce a range of shirts that are hand screen printed with geometric shapes (+ slideshow).
Graphic design studio New Future Graphic will manufacture the shirts, which are due to go on sale in February, as well as provide the packaging design and art direction for the presentation of the collection.
Each style features a unique new pattern by Eley Kishimoto, a south-London studio best known for its use of prints on womenswear and accessories.
"Tek is a collaboration bringing crafting from our print room in Brixton – developing the prints, and physically screen printing them and doing finishing on British shirting fabric – to Timothy Everest Atelier Studio House in Elder St," explained Eley Kishimoto co-founder Mark Eley. "Timothy is a bespoke tailor. We've both got similar heritage."
"Fundamentally it's a British, London made product, to get some nice shirts out there for men that have a little bit more narrative than some shirts that exist in the market right now with the integrity that we have with the print personality."
The collaboration was initiated by New Future Graphic founders Gareth White and Marcus Walters via a personal family connection with Eley, whose designs currently adorn shoes sold by Clarks.
Both Walter's mum and Eley's aunt work in the Clarks store in Porthcawl, Wales, and made the connection between the two businesses.
"I said bring us an idea, and they brought Timothy," explained Eley. The first result was a bespoke suit for Eley, made from dead stock fabric from Eley Kishimoto's previous designs.
"This is not really our own label, we're using the platform for Timothy because he's a menswear specialist – even though a shirt's a shirt and it's carrying our print, he knows the market. He has more men friends than we do and I think it's nice that it's something made in London," said Eley.
"It's not something that we do for commercial gain, this is purely a creative exercise, which may look like it has the opportunity to have more monetary gain or business gain at a later date."
Six different patterns were created for the cotton shirts, and are used in either all-over designs called Bold or as accents called Humble to create 12 different styles.
Woven Steven is a tartan-like check in shades of blue and pink, combined with a small blue gingham patterns.
In the Bold version the large check is used for the main body of the shirts, and the gingham on the shoulders, pocket, cuffs and neck lining. The Woven Steven Humble reverses this pattern arrangement.
The same reversal is repeated throughout the collection. Tetchy Bold and Tetchy Humble combine a classic small blue, red and white check with large angular strips of blue printed over the top and chambray accents.
Triagonal Tricks Bold and Humble combine pure white cotton with a pattern of green triangles and blue-grey trapezia.
Shapes Bold and Shapes Humble uses a fine pin-stripe and a print of black squares, triangles, circles and thick lines.
Carbon Tricks Bold and Humble share a plain grey texture fabric and a trapezoidal print in a darker shade.
Finally Fidgets Humble and Bold also uses a plain white cotton, combined with a print of off-kilter dark blue rectangles with tiny white triangles in their corners.
Eight of the shirts have an Oxford collar, with small buttons to attach the collar tips to the shirt and keep them in place, while the others are a classic style.
"We don't know what project two is, it may be a collection of board shorts, it may be suits, it may be a toothpaste range – I don't know. Whatever is right for us, the collaborators, the three of us, the direction we want to take the project," said Eley.
"It's not really a commercial venture at the moment, it's more of a creative venture – and I get to have 12 shirts by next February which is perfect."
Eley Kishimoto also unveiled a collaboration with watch brand Fossil this month, with a design influenced by 1950s clocks.