We got the rare opportunity to sit down for a one-on-one with the talented designer as he prepares to launch his newest fragrance (debuting spring '13). While we're sworn to secrecy on the scent (for now), we did get him to open up about staying relevant, celebrity fragrances (spoiler: he's not a fan) and the possibility of a makeup line (pretty please?). Read on to get the scoop straight from the man himself.
This past collection of yours has very much been an editor favorite, and it's one that people are saying really goes back to the roots of the brand. How do you stay inspired?
"Well, it's hard when you're…my age. But I feel that in any field, in any career, there's a start, and a middle, and there's an end. And I think when you stay true to what you love but you also keep evolving, I think you just get better at it. And hopefully that's true with my work. I tend to cut out the trends and block out the noise and instead look at things that I find really inspiring — the way that people move on the street, and how people live and present themselves to the world. It says so much about the times, and about people themselves."
In terms of your perfume, is the person wearing your perfume the same person who's wearing your clothing?
"Interestingly enough, I've met quite a few women who are loyalists of the ready-to-wear who are also loyalists of the fragrance, and I think the fragrance For Her is such a great reflection of women who are feminine and sensual. I dress that kind of woman, so there is an overlap. Certainly with fragrance, it is much more accessible to many women who desire to be a part of the club, and it's a great way to experience the brand."
We love how alluring your aesthetic is, but in a pared-down way. How do you translate that into beauty?
"You know, I'm always curious about seduction, which to me is more appealing than something that's overtly sexual. I love that people think of my work as being very sexy and sensual without being overt. And when you meet someone, you remember the scent. You don't remember it because it was overpowering, but because it was so seductive and beautiful. I think when you make an impact in that way, it's always so much more interesting than by beating people over the head with an advertising campaign, or by how loud the color you're wearing is, or how many labels you have on. That discretion and sensuality and mystery…it's just so intoxicating."
What drew you to fragrance?
"I think for some people it's a business decision, and for some people it might be an ego or image-driven decision, but for me, ever since I was very young, I had an appreciation for fragrance and the glamour and beauty of fragrance, and so I really wanted to do it and had dreamt of doing it in different ways. Always. So when I was lucky enough to partner with BPI, I set the goals really high. I had this dream to create this fragrance that was iconic — in its packaging, in its scent, in its purity, and in its newness. Something highly addictive that everyone envied and admired. And BPI took the challenge, and we were able to create For Her. And it has evolved beautifully and very naturally into the Eau de Parfum and the launch of the musk collection, which was a limited edition but was so well-received that we put it on the range as a forever product."
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