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ICHIRO SUZUKI interview

 
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Posted on Nov 11 2013


ladiesngents
ladiesngents



You have said that you “were not interested in design, but in how clothes were made”. Would you elaborate?
I did not move to London to learn designing  but tailoring and how the suits are engineered. When I first decided to be a  tailor with no experience in fashion I had no intention to be a designer.  I got myself into menswear after encountering the power of suits being mesmerised by it. I started reading books about it and the word ‘Savile Row’ was mentioned a lot.  I started wondering what this street and place is all about and made it my goal to work and be trained  by a tailor there. I still love classic styles but I used to love it a lot more earlier and did not think that tailoring would need designing. If anything, I hated design and anything that disturbs the classics. When I was studying tailoring I used to have some sort of design class once a week but I would skip the class and practice pockets and stuff. This attitude went on until I transferred to the 3rd year menswear degree course where I did my first collection.








What is it that you find most inspiring about fashion?
I am drawn to fashion's diversity, the fact  that everyone can be unique and irreplaceable. I like the fact that people can inject and translate their ideas and personalities into their creations, and through their clothing the outward expression of their inner selves are represented
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You have stated that your aim is to revitalise the customs of English tradition with an artistic and unique approach. Would you elaborate on this approach and the way it can infuse vitality into British tradition?
I have my muse. George Bryan Brummel, better known as “Beau Brummel” has been quite an inspiration for me. He was famous of the dashing young gentlemen of the Regency and established how the modern gentleman should look in his age, which is the absence of ornamentation and decoration in favour of perfectly fitted and tailored clothes. I guess I have been trying to do the same he did in terms of  ‘creating modern gentleman’ except I cannot do self-publicity so I try to do the same through designing and making  clothes.



ladiesngents
ladiesngents


Moreover, it has been written that with your work you offer a "fresh take on the country’s classic menswear tradition”. In turn, what is it that you most love of the British classic menswear tradition?

Talking about the tradition, I love and hate the fact that they never change drastically. My own view on classic menswear is that when you work on the menswear you have to work within the rules and parametres. Menswear avoids and refuses drastic changes, it has to evolve.



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Your latest collection is inspired by Michel Pastoureau’s “The Devil’s Cloth: A History of Stripes and Striped Fabric”. Do you enjoy studying the history of fashion and art, when working on your own collections? In what way can this prove enriching?
I love tracing clothes' origins and read books about fashion history. For example, When I did my first collection, ‘Tweedissimo’( it was about giving the tweeds a new and flashy impression), I spent a month travelling around Scotland and went to places where each tweed were originated from. I went to Harris Island to collect Harris Tweed and went to Shetland island to do some research on Shetland Tweed. It was quite hectic but that enabled me to find new wisdom through reviewing the old. I do not normally travel for sightseeing but it an historical fashion object is always a motive for a trip. 
I would next love to go to Copenhagen where, I heard, there is a museum where one can see the oldest woven clothes.



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How about your personal style - do you like to experiment with it ?
I do not design what I want to wear and what is even worse is I dress terribly. I do not look like a guy working in fashion, especially when I am in casual attire.  People are normally quite surprised.
I am much more comfortable with letting my work speak on my behalf.



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Can you recall a favourite childhood garment, something that you still think fondly of?
The Levi’s jeans that my mum bought for me when I was 13. Obviously I cannot fit into them anymore, but I still have them.
when I was younger I used to splash a lot of money on designers' clothes but I am not fond of them for some reason.



ladiesngents



In your experience so far, what is it that people try to express through the clothes they choose: their wishes, or their life experience?
I think both. Clothes are powerful means of expression for all of us.
Fashion is the inexplicable sense of belonging. It is the place where we can shelter ourselves and at the same time show everyone who we really are. Sometimes you can see through what people have experienced by studying how they’re dressed.
What we wear can be defined in a single word, ‘Communication’.




ichirosuzuki.co.uk



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