Clothes that allow me to do impromtu star jumps on the streets generally make me happy. You'd think there be heaps of clothing in this ilk but when you bring delicate embroidery, crystal embellishments, heavy beading, body-conscious silhouettes, strict tailoring and non-stretch fabrics into the fold (i.e. that would be 75% of my wardrobe…), that doesn't leave a lot of room for manoeuvre. Quite literally, no physical manoeuvering allowed.
Clothes by Aussie label P.A.M. aka Perks and Mini on the other hand are perfect star jump attire material. Based in Melbourne, Misha Hollenbach and Shauna Toohey have been doing the fashion/art/music/books/anything-else-they-want crossover thing for the past ten years or so and they do it exceedingly well. There really is no-one else quite like P.A.M. anywhere I venture and yet they remain something of an insider label. When I meet fellow P.A.M. fans, it's like I already partially know what that person might be into and that we'd get along just nicely. At a P.A.M. party in Sydney during Australian Fashion Week, I witnessed many P.A.M. wearers bouncing around to Misha's tracks on the decks and loved how big everyone's bouncing was. These clothes are made for silly and sweaty-browed dancing. They have no time for girls who want to mince around at the side sipping a cocktail in polite fashion. Likewise, should I want to break out in dorky kung fu kicks or fall down on the sidewalk like the eternal klutz that I am, then P.A.M. clothes will at least allow me to do so with dignity. Their S/S 13 Black Gold collection (GoodHood in UK have a good selection too) could on the surface be labelled with lazy descriptors such as "tribal" and "ethnic" but actually it was born out of a serious residency Shauna and Misha did at Frankfurt's ethnographic Weltkulturen Museum. In their own words "Patterns, cultures, styles and traditions are collected from the past, present and future ‚Äì they merge, exchange, layer and mesh." They know how to filter their cultural and ethnic references to the point where it becomes something distinctly P.A.M.-looking.
After a quick look at P.A.M.'s video which sees their lookbook animated and brought to life alongside footage of crafts, which Misha and Shauna investigated on their residency, I decided to animate a few quickfire moves myself just to illustrate how important throwing shapes is in the harsh reality of mundane day-to-day life.
Even their swim/beach wear sends out positive vibes as opposed to body flaw-loathing negativity, aided by this cosmic raved-up dolphin print.
For their A/W 13 collection, they tone down the print and instead concentrate on… what do you know it… movement! The collection Tierra Del Fuego has more to do with clothes-to-hang-out-freely-in, then the Land of Fire in South America. Oversized fleeces jackets, lattice cut-out tunics and matching ensembles in Perks and Mini stripes sit alongside photo prints that make you want to… jump! Slip-on shoes and glitter ankle boots are P.A.M.'s tried and tested foot companions – all the better to do more of that dancefloor bouncing. Just scrolling up and down this page makes me want to blast out the latest Mount Kimbie loudly and shake it all about.