Paul Harnden is a Brighton-based shoemaker and fashion designer whose domains are supreme craftsmanship and using long-forgotten techniques, popular in the past. Harnden’s approach to both life and his fashion career is remarkable and quite unusual these days in this industry - the designer is basically untraceable and undiscoverable. He’s fully focused on his work without making much appearance in the fashion world of showing off and being up-to-date with latest trends and events. This is what the enthusiasts of his work value - every single one of his pieces stand for absolute dedication and commitment to his craft only.
Harnden has collected a fair amount of devotees over the years, some of which are A-list celebrities and media personalities. His designs are being worn by Brad Pitt, Jeremy Strong and even John Galliano, who, as he claimed, “buys all his stuff from Paul Harnden”. The phenomenon of the designer, whose pieces are being sold in places such as Dover Street Market is that nobody has actually met him. He lets the clothes speak for himself, finding it unnecessary to take any action towards being heard and described in his own words.
The thing about Harnden’s vision is that his designs are not meant to look new or fresh in any way. Dickensian silhouettes are characterised by the otherworldly feeling of having crossed mountains, rivers and forests before arriving to its final destination. Harnden’s pieces speak softly about a universe only a few may immerse in.
Written by Julia Siechowicz