Get Schooled: The Stories Behind Designer Names

You may be able to recall every single Proenza Schouler collection since its first bustier-filled '03 line, but when it comes to its name, do you know where the "Proenza" in Proenza Schouler comes from? What about Band of Outsiders? Suno?
Unlike no-duh traditional designer labels like Louis Vuitton and Chanel, many modern-day designers (especially Americans) have names that are a little more inspired. Ahead, we've broken it down for you and revealed how the brands you love got their names, from one designer with an obsession with Godard films to others who — as most good things typically do — got it from their mamas.
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Band of Outsiders



The term Band of Outsiders comes from the 1964 Godard film, Bande à part, which translates as "to do something apart from the group," or, more colloquially, "band of outsiders." Designer Scott Sternberg settled on the name, in part because he identified with "the literal interpretation of rebellion and solitude, and the contradiction within the phrase itself as one doesn’t think of outsiders being part of a community."

Photo: Courtesy of Band of Outsiders
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Suno



Suno founder Max Osterweis splits his time between the United States and Kenya, where his Kenyan mother still lives in Lamu Island. Launching Suno in spring of '09 after post-election violence, Osterweis named his new fashion line after his mama.

Photo: Courtesy of Suno
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Creatures of the Wind



This Chicago-based brand takes its name from the gorgeous 1957 Johnny Mathis song, "Wild is the Wind." A little melancholic, a little haunting, a little nostalgic, a little quirky, Creatures of the Wind perfectly personifies this song.

Photographed by Gunnar Larson
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BCBG



BCBG is simply an acronym for "Bon Chic, Bon Genre," which, in English, means "good style, good attitude."

Photo: Maria Valentino/MCV Photo
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J.Crew



When J.Crew was founded in 1983, owner Arthur Cinader wanted a name to directly compete with the super-preppy Ralph Lauren Polo. The J was tacked on because Cinader thought it "added cache." While it isn't the most romantic of stories, it's a bit of strategy that has proved effective!

Photo: Courtesy of J.Crew
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Alice + Olivia



Designer Stacey Bendet named the brand after Olivia, her mother (the Alice part comes from a former partner whose mother was — yep, you guessed it — named Alice).

Photo: Courtesy of Alice + Olivia
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Comme des Garçons



Taken from the Françoise Hardy song, "Tous les garçons et les filles," (in English: "All The Boys and Girls") about feeling lonely in love, Comme des Garçons is French for "Like the Boys," an appropriate moniker for a label that consistently challenges the division between masculinity and femininity.

Photo: Maria Valentino/MCV Photo
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Proenza Schouler



Designers Lazaro Hernandez' mother's maiden name is Proenza and Jack McCollough's mother's is Schouler. And…there you go!

Photographed by Nina Westervelt
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rag & bone



A vocation from olden England, a "rag and bone" man would drive around collecting recyclables such as scrap metal, wood, and castoffs that he could later gussy up and resell. For David Neville and Marcus Wainwright's inventive, English-trad style, the name is a perfect fit.

Photo: Maria Valentino/MCV Photo
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Rodarte



Designers Kate and Laura Mulleavy's mother's maiden name is Rodarte (pronounced Row-dart-eh). We're getting the feeling that naming your brand after your mother is fashion's equivalent of the "I Love Mom" tattoo.

Photo: Maria Valentino/MCV Photo
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