Paul Smith @ Design Museum

After leaving behind the warmth of the glassblowing studio and stepping out into the crisp air outside, we carried on walking towards Shad Thames.
The primary objective of our outing was a visit to Design Museum for the exhibition: Hello, My Name is Paul Smith

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The inside of the pink shed explained how Paul Smith started his global fashion empire from a humble room in Nottingham.
The next exhibit was a video installation narrated by Paul himself…

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Then, his study was showcased, using his collection of knick-knacks…

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I’ve heard the story that Paul receives a heap of letters and gifts from his fan from all over the world. Even though I’ve never met him personally – I only saw a glimpse of him in front of his shop on Floral Street some years ago, I am not at all surprised because he comes across as a genuinely nice person. Unlike those large big name brand designers, who want us to regard them as demigods therefore never make themselves easily accessible, he appears to be relaxed, balanced and humble in a good way.

Then, the next exhibit was a recreation of his studio with desktops a full of designing paraphernalia while patterns were hung above them…

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An array of mood boards, books, samples litter the whole space.

Some of his famous collaborations with another designers and manufacturers were on display.
The most famous one must be with Austin Mini…

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Teaming up with Roberts Radio…

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Turned the corner and found a wall full of buttons…

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In the middle of it, there was a flat-screen TV, showing the opening of his Albermarle Street shop opening in sequence.

Then, we moved on to the next room, exhibiting some of his iconic works…

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Men’s cotton jacket made from embroidered afghan blanket…

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Men’s quilted down shark tooth print top…

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Men’s cotton floral print jacket…

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Women’s sequin snowflake knitwear…

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I was surprised that the exhibition didn’t include his most famous “Mao-collar jacket”. Why not?
What I always loved about his work was his sense of humour. Not taking things too seriously but also grasping them with enthusiasm. Living up to his word, his adulation was infectious.
And my fascination seemed to be shared by show visitors, young…

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And not so young…

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The spine of the exhibition was decorated with the collection of Paul’s artworks…

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They were mishmash of photographs, printings and paintings…

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A man in suits…

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A girl in a coat…

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His deft footwork definitely has helped to make British tailoring as well as British humour accessible to a worldwide audience…

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On our way out, his upbeat motto cheered me up greatly…

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I came away from the exhibition, feeling positive and happy. It was obvious that his enthusiasm rubbed off on me. Anyone who wants to bask in a myriad of colours in the middle of winter, the show will offer it in abundance. Why don’t you get a sartorial vitamin injection by Paul Smith at Design Museum?…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

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