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May The Fashion Be With You: Bobby Abley at London Collections Men

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While more established labels, like Burberry and Tom Ford, drew in sharp-dressed big spenders to their runway pageants and store presentations, Bobby Abley drew a more diverse crowd to his humble show, which took place beneath beaming lights in a gray-painted basement of the Victoria House in central London.

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The first two expressionless models wore camouflage gear, suggestive of the recent decade of war. But these gave way to outfits heavy on “Star Wars” motifs, whisking the spectators to mythic events that took place “a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away.”

One of Bobby Abley’s models wore a white T-shirt with the words “Super Dooper Storm Trooper” emblazoned across the front. Another wore a furrily textured shirt with the word “Chewy” across the front — a reference to Chewbacca, the beloved, if inarticulate, Wookiee sidekick to Han Solo. There was even a small backpack that featured the face of the least popular character in the “Star Wars” universe, Jar Jar Binks, a Gungan alien in the series’ 1999 installment, “Star Wars: Episode I: The Phantom Menace.”

Asked if he had reached an agreement with Disney to create a “Star Wars” clothing tie-in, Mr. Abley said: “I can’t comment on that. But there might be something in the pipeline.”

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Mr. Abley’s designs are not all sugar and sentiment. They include nods to goth, punk, Japanese anime and the “plushie” subculture, which has made him a darling of the alt-fashion crowd and a favorite of the punk designer Dame Vivienne Westwood.

With his oddball designs, Mr. Abley, a man with a shy manner who blushes easily, is a long way from the fashion establishment. But with a patron like Disney, he may, like the ragtag rebel bunch that took down the evil Galactic Empire in “Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi,” find himself in power one day, with all the delights and difficulties that go with it.

-Source: The New York Times

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