“Design integrity, quality, that’s number one. But the visual environment is also important,” said fashion designer Alexander Wang.
In The Guardian’s fashion issue, writer Jess Cartner-Morely asked him how he can charge top dollar for an informal brand (his latest sporty-looking collection was inspired by trainer footwear). And he responds as above – it looks good, it feels like quality and a lot of attention is paid to store design and display.
Wang shows that he’s not just a snappy dresser or knows how to draw. The reason he’s a ‘top flight’ designer is because he knows who he is designing for.
And apparently the phrase ‘on trend’ (which replaced ‘trendy’, showing my age) is dead: “Fashion is so much more about conversations now than trends.” He continues: “There’s not one message that matters, it’s all about the one-on-one conversations a brand has with its audience.”
The Wang brand channels Wang – his clothes are the projection of his personality, his need to break new ground.
He also demonstrates the grit required to develop a successful business; early on, formidable fashion legend Diane von Furstenberg offered him a job. He turned her down, wanting to stick to his guns: “I’d dropped out of school…made a commitment to my family.”
Three years later he was at New York fashion week.