London menswear designer Christopher Shannon’s unique aesthetic has always managed to transcend the catwalk, with design and art-direction not only limited to his collections, but manifest in everything he does – right down to his show invites. David Hellqvist, online editor at PORT Magazine, recently sat down with the designer as he picked out a few of his favorite invites and the thought process behind them. Here’s his selection:

Palm Tree

We used this invite for Spring Summer 12. I wanted a slightly seedy and fake tropical feel but I can’t remember where I found this image. I didn’t really realise quite how suggestive it was until my PR called to say she thought it was ‘erotic’! At the time I was looking at loads of festival imagery of people just getting wrecked.


This was for Autumn Winter 11. I just remember it was a freezing February and we had been working in a cold studio all winter long, I was gagging for spring to come. Outside the kitchen window of the house I grew up in, there was a cherry blossom tree. They are the thing I mostly associate with the end of winter. I grew up near these big boulevards that had blossom trees on them, it was just really stunning in spring. As kids we would shake the trees to make the blossom fall – it would drive the adults mental, now I understand why.


This is Autumn Winter 12, I had been watching the film LA Haine a lot and thinking about the crossover of styles between French street styles and the UK. I was working with the artist Julie Verhoeven on the set for the show; it was a bit net curtain-esque. I had this idea of the old ladies watching some kids vandalising the phone box. Julie had models behind the set with their legs coming through. This image is not far from where I grew up, all those quiet weekends wondering around suburbia as a kid, looking at twitchy net curtains. The light in Liverpool is very particular; it’s really clean and sharp. I can always tell when things on TV have been filmed there because of the way the light is.

The Idiot
For Spring Summer 2013, I was looking at loads of British festivals. The photographer James Pearson-Howes had been compiling a book of his photos of these rituals. They are really nicely put together so I asked him if we could use the photos and he agreed. I’ve always loved documentary photography and portraiture. The lad in the hay suit is called ‘The Idiot’, it’s something to do with chasing him through the village and setting him on fire, I think. I’m probably mixing up my rituals but they are all just an excuse for a massive piss up really…

For the complete article, head over to PORT Magazine’s website.