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Chateau Orlando — introducing Luke Edward Hall’s debut fashion brand

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It was a logical next step for artist, designer and interiors genius Luke Edward Hall to launch a fashion line. Chateau Orlando, he says, is a new ‘brand for the person and home’ inspired by ‘ancient and contemporary art, old houses and gardens, vintage clothing, 1980s pop music, folklore and mythology, flowers, books and travel.’

The first drop, Postcards From The Castle, consists of vintage-inspired knitwear (sweatervests, crewnecks and cardigans) and there will be a pop-up in Paris. Prices start at €55.

As with all outputs from his 2015 founded studio, designs come dripping in ancient references brought up to date for the stylish set who zip between Hackney and their country cottages. Hall himself is speaking from his home on the Gloucester-Oxfordshire border. “I kind of live in the middle of nowhere,” he says.

Photography by Billal Taright

/ Chateau Orlando

Living in the countryside almost permanently for the last two years has given him the peace of mind to build up a twelve-piece strong collection. It’s all trellis motifs on olive green knits, pale blue check vests with poppies and oak leave covered cotton pullovers. He called it ‘Postcards From The Castle’ because it was inspired by the secret gardens of Britain’s great houses.

Here, he tells us how his background in menswear design set him up to launch Chateau Orlando, and how Harry Styles embodies it best.

How far does your relationship with fashion design go back?

I did a foundation at Saint Martins, and I thought I was going into Graphic Design, but it was that moment when there was loads of really fun fashion moments going on in East London and I lived in Bethnal Green. I was thinking of doing styling and stuff, but then thought, wait: if I’m doing this, maybe I want to do proper design, so I went and interned with Jonathan Anderson.

How did you find working at JW Anderson?

It was when he was just coming up, doing menswear. I only did it for a few months but that was my first taste for working in fashion. I learnt quite a lot in those few months.

What happened next?

I did menswear Fashion Design at Saint Martins, and then almost straight after went to work for an interior designer. When I set my own thing up in 2015 I was working on a mixture of projects some interior stuff and drawings. But I’ve always loved making products.

You have done fashion projects since?

I’ve sort of dipped in and out with fashion stuff over the years. I partnered with some brands – Burberry and Lanvin – and then [in 2020] I did a little collection with Gant based on their archive. I loved working on the Gant collection, because I hadn’t done any proper fashion things in a while, and it was really fun, working with colours and shapes and also on styling, choosing models, and locations. It was definitely one of the factors that made me say ‘yes’ to working on Chateau Orlando.

Photography by Billal Taright

/ Chateau Orlando

So, you’ve focussed on great patterned knitwear for the first drop – why?

Knitwear is my favourite kind of clothing. It’s a really good way to get colour and pattern into the wardrobe, so that was a big factor. I have this collection of vintage, and based a lot of the shapes on things that I own, and then slightly adapted them – adding a collar here or whatever.

What other components have fed into these designs?

I love taking inspiration from different sources and clashing it together. A lot of my work in the past has been about taking inspiration from history – Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome – which I try and make contemporary, usually through my use of colour and style of drawing. This first collection is specifically inspired by gardens and this idea of a medieval castle. But then the visual identity and graphic design of the logo was quite inspired by 1960s and 1970s typography and film.

Tell me about the name?

I love naming stuff but they are not fun things at the beginning. It’s a big commitment and a lot to think about. I spent months, and wrote lists of all my favourite words. Chateau and Orlando were both on there. There are a few layers to it: I love Orlando the book (by Virginia Woolf), and I think it seems relevant in the sense that it’s kind of about hopping in time, and getting inspiration from different periods. Also I really like the idea it could be an old hotel on the Riviera, or a club on Sunset Boulevard that closed down in the eighties.

Photography by Billal Taright

/ Chateau Orlando

Who embodies the brand to you?

I do think Harry Styles is dressing particularly well at the moment, and is really experimental in terms of colours, and patterns in a way that’s fun, romantic and playful. They are very important elements of what I’m trying to do.

Can we expect a greater range of garments going forth?

We’ve already sorted out the winter collection which is knitwear as well – but winter knitwear. Wool and loads of fluffy mohair. We’ve only done in total 12 pieces for this one, but for autumn/winter that jumps up to about 40. And then, for spring/summer next year, we will have added a few more ready to wear pieces, hopefully.

And is there Chateau Orlando homeware on the horizon?

Because I work in interiors it feels natural to add in pieces that can also be used in the home! It would be a shame not to with some of the patterns we’ve made – I’d love to see them on cushions and other bits and pieces for the house.

Click through the gallery above to see the first Chateau Orlando collection; chateauorlando.com

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