Interview + Photography by Luke Alland.
"As soon as I opened the door he was shocked, 'where did you get that shirt from? Where is that fabric from?' He said that in 1967. He made pyjamas out of that fabric, but he was too fat at the time to make a shirt, so he just made trousers. That fabric has travelled all that way, over all those years, and we both ended up making something really special with it."
Scott Fraser Simpson is an obsessive collector, vintage archivist and enthusiast, as well as the founder of his eponymous menswear brand, Scott Fraser Collection, which informs all of his decisions. One of the best dressed in London, his continual adaptation and designs have proven to be a mainstay in the industry. We sat down to talk through his 5 pieces and how he came to own them, with stories stretching from Shoreditch to Shanghai.
Thing 1: '40s Shanghai Souvenir
Luke Alland: You're a huge collector of vintage clothes and I've always been envious of your wardrobe, your first piece has truly aged like a fine wine. What's the story?
Scott Fraser Simpson: "The premise of it all is that I continuously collect vintage. I have my grail pieces, which I will always love. But as I grow, my vintage collecting will gravitate towards certain pieces, 'this is my favourite at the moment or maybe this one'. Although they all kind of stay in the same vein. This was one of those. It was a really amazing piece for me to find.
"I grew up in Hong Kong, and this had that sort of Eastern connection, as well as it being tied into another obsession which I'm into at the moment: satin and silk shirts. It ticked a box there. It has this lovely ornate back going on and it makes me go crazy when you find that there's a date stamp on it.
"I also found it to be really interesting because it was so faded and that's another obsession at the moment. The ridiculous sun-fading on the body, where I think it's been on display in a shop for 10 years and then you lift up the collar and it's a really dark blue underneath. The reason it's so special I think, is because it shows so much of its age and there's so much life in it, whatever that have may have been."