My flatmate brought home a copy of INDUSTRIE magazine last night and – no exaggeration – it’s the best fashion magazine I’ve read in years. It hits the trifecta – superb design, interesting profiles and great writing. The layout is particularly impressive – it’s no mean feat to put together a text-filled double page spread and make it appealing to read (narrow columns are key). Its subject is the fashion industry – not the trends or the latest must have items, not even the collections, but the people who make fashion what it is, the challenges the industry faces and the way forward. I’m yet to put it down.
My favourite quotes (from Tommy Ton, Panos Yiapanis, Sarah Mower, Marie-Amelie Sauve, Rick Owens and Natalie Massenet) below.
Jak and Jil‘s Tommy Ton on menswear:
“There’s something inspiring about this idea of a uniform which is evident in the way that men dress themselves: a suit, a pair of pants, a shirt. Menswear is not as disposable as womenswear, it’s more investment dressing… The challenging aspect about documenting menswear is the detail. I find that men are more drawn to detail, whether it’s the collar, the cuff or the trimmings. I’m learning how to capture it, and I find my men’s detail shots more inspiring on a style level than the pictures I take of women, which are more about a complete look.”
Stylist Panos Yiapanis on how he sees the industry right now:
“I’m disappointed. I feel there’s even more money involved now, and that seems to have created this unnecessary and tiresome environment. I just think everything is really safe and sterile at the moment. Certain publications I don’t want to name have used this supposed crisis as a reason to not rock the boat. But I really think that there is a need for exciting and inspiring work right now. Because what we’re peddling is not a necessity – you can make do without the eighth handbag. So unless you really excite a person to part with their money – and at this time it’s even harder to do that unless you really excite them – then they’re just not going to. Its not a case of tricking them into doing that – it’s a case of creating something they will really cherish. If you’re playing it safe and you’re just putting campaigns there that look like catalogues, then it’s not going to work. Everything looks like, “OK, here’s everything we make.” Remember the old Jil Sander campaigns with Guinevere with half her face cut off and no product? I was just starting to look at magazines then, and those are the first campaigns I can remember seeing; they created a feeling of mystery and excitement around the brand. Now there seems to be more emphasis on making sure you can see every stitch of the jacket and the shoes. I think it’s naive and short-sighted. But that might just be my opinion. I don’t know.”
Sarah Mower on her ideal dinner party date:
“It would just be me and Martin Margiela. So I could thank him for all the clothes I’ve bought from him, tell him how much he’s made me laugh and spend, and hand him a signed petition from all the dispossessed women and men I know who want him back!”
Stylist Marie-Amelie Sauve on the advantage of consulting:
“I was young and those clothes seemed very old-fashioned to me at the time. At that time I was like, ‘Oh my God! That is so ugly!’ I’d be on shoots and going, ‘Bleurgh!’ That was another part of my frustration [with styling]. Consulting allowed me to push designers to create clothes I’d want to photograph and even wear myself.”
Rick Owens on finding the right personal trainer:
“Frankly the main qualifications were that they had to look like they knew what they were talking about, and be someone pleasant to hang out with every day.”
Net-a-Porter’s Natalie Massenet on designers who didn’t get what she was trying to do:
“I think they just thought we were crazy. You’d go through an entire pitch and say, ‘And then you can click and buy it from pictures and it’s delivered anywhere in the world.” And they’d listen and they’d nod and then afterwards they’d say, ‘Just tell me one more thing: where is your store?’ There was one brand in particular – I had this conversation with them three times over the course of a month. By then we were getting something like 3,000 new customers a month and we already had a pretty impressive lineup of some of the best brands. So I kind of lost my patience in the end. As a result, that brand, which now wants to be on the site, is probably never going to be on the site.”
Buy INDUSTRIE – it’s amazing.
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