I was recently invited to take part in the London stage of a global project Bench are undertaking entitled #LoveMyHood. The project celebrates the hood being an integral piece of every Bench collection since they began, back in Manchester in the late 1980’s. Each country has developed a different interpretation of #LoveMyHood, from working with sculptors and street artists to blogger styling projects to showroom open days. 

The London stage of the project focused on the blogger and how they have become such a formidable part of the fashion landscape. The concept was to turn the lenses of bloggers back on themselves, by inviting them to be photographed or illustrated by one of four incredible artists.

Andrew Khozravani, a South London based illustrator and animator who’s past clients include Dazed & Confused, Slam City Skates and Wu Tang Clan. Dominic Marley who can count Nike, Redbull and Carhartt among the pages of his photography portfolio. Sussex based creative and illustrator Rebel Yuth aka John Ryan Speed, who brings music culture to life through his intricate line drawings and Stew Capper, portrait photographer and proud contributor to NME, Article and Vice Magazine.

The four artists each captured four bloggers and all 16 portraits will be shown as part of a gallery event in November. Talk Casuals are alongside talent like The Unisexmode, Snoochie Shy, Pause Magazine and Apparently Magazine also involved in the resulting artwork that will be officially launched at a private view exhibition on 20th November. 

I was so excited to be invited to be a part of Bench's global campaign. Click Read More to check out my involvement in the exhibition.

Last Tuesday I headed down to Canoe Inc HQ and met up with the rad John of Rebel Yuth for our collaboration in the exhibition. 

First off, I picked out my hooded Bench pieces for the illustration. I fell for the windproof Canabroom Icon hoody straight away! I loved the colour and pattern of this hoody and of course, I picked the piece with the 3M trimmings! I opted for the blue version of the Slingin top too, its all about layering this AW and this piece is the perfect base for it! I don't like to be too outrageous with colour but the dark blue worked perfectly for a pop of colour against the greyscale palette of the hoody. My final piece, also with hood but this time fur-trimmed, is the Kidder iii slim-cut jacket in black. I never usually go for this style of jacket either, in fact, my go-to is usually a boyfriend cut or bomber style, but this one is to die for! Fur lined and a perfect fit, I especially liked the high neck. Honestly, I was really impressed with this jacket. Bench have never been a brand I would look to for a winter warmer, but the quality and fit of this jacket has definitely put them up there with some of my favourites. 

I had some shots taken in my chosen hooded pieces and then thats where Rebel Yuth does his thing! He went away and created an illustration of me from the photos. I am so excited to see the final product! I can only show you some 'behind the scenes' and sneak photos for now, but I can't wait to show you the final piece!

The private view launch of the London stage of #LoveMyHood campaign is on November 20th! Really can't wait to see the final Talk Casuals x Rebel Yuth collaborative illustration and the rest of the pieces in the project! 

Make sure you get involved in the #LoveMyHood campaign too by entering the competition here to win a city break and £1000 worth of Bench gear! 


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