Fran­cisco Costa

The women’s cre­ative di­rec­tor of Calvin Klein Collection on the new di­rec­tion he’s steer­ing min­i­mal­ism, and the house that de­fines it. By Jef­frey Yan.

Harper’s Bazaar (Malaysia) - - Contents -

What does min­i­mal­ism mean to you? Con­ti­nu­ity and time­less­ness is the core of min­i­mal­ism. While the look might have evolved since Calvin’s in­ter­pre­ta­tion in the ’90s, the in­tent has al­ways been the same – to pu­rify. It is about find­ing that per­fect bal­ance out of im­bal­ance; pair­ing shapes, fabrics, pro­por­tions, and colours that speak to the har­mony of the whole. But there’s a dif­fer­ent take on that, lately, with lin­gerie pieces, fring­ing, and fray­ing. Is this a de­lib­er­ate change in aes­thetic? I have felt very free and op­ti­mistic the last few sea­sons, so I wanted to think out­side the box. I ex­plored dif­fer­ent tex­tures and shapes to cre­ate new sil­hou­ettes, and fo­cused on unique pat­terns and in­tri­cate sur­faces. While de­con­structed, the clothes were still true to the brand’s aes­thetic, which is so­phis­ti­cated and el­e­gant. Last year was your 10th as women’s cre­ative di­rec­tor at the brand. What is the big­gest dif­fer­ence be­tween then and now? Both Calvin Klein Collection and the fash­ion in­dus­try have be­come more global over the last decade. The in­ter­na­tional na­ture of the busi­ness has greatly im­pacted how we build and shape our brand, from how we de­sign and mar­ket to our clients, to how we ex­pand and where we open new stores. Speak­ing of ex­pan­sion, new stores are open­ing in Malaysia, Sin­ga­pore, Thai­land, and Hong Kong. Why do you think the brand is res­onat­ing right now? There is cur­rently a very strong in­ter­est and ap­pre­ci­a­tion for clean, min­i­mal­is­tic clothes in fash­ion, es­pe­cially in the Asian mar­ket. This el­e­gant sim­plic­ity and moder­nity is what we do best, and it feels very right for now, so it’s a great time to be ex­pand­ing the brand’s pres­ence through­out Asia. How has the Calvin Klein Collection woman changed? She has def­i­nitely evolved. To­day she is more provoca­tive, but with an un­der­ly­ing sen­su­al­ity. I would say she’s ex­tremely con­fi­dent and self-aware; the kind of woman who leads a global life and is best de­scribed as so­phis­ti­cated, cul­tured, and well-trav­elled. Tell us about the Au­tumn/ Win­ter ’14 collection. Rooted in rich, cosy knits it’s all about a re­turn to ba­sics, but ba­sics done in a lux­u­ri­ous way. The use of colour is very in­ter­est­ing; the pal­ette sur­faced from the mix of yarns used for all the in­tri­cate knitted lay­ers. To be­gin the de­sign process, I al­ways play with shapes first. Through drap­ing and work­ing with fabrics, we come up with in­no­va­tive sil­hou­ettes. Fab­ric de­vel­op­ment is cru­cial – that’s what makes the clothes feel fresh and mod­ern ev­ery sea­son. Some de­sign­ers loathe dress­ing celebri­ties for the red car­pet – is it a process you en­joy? Celebrity dress­ing is very in­tense, but the vis­i­bil­ity and ex­po­sure from it is in­cred­i­ble. How­ever, the re­la­tion­ship has to be built on a mu­tual re­spect for each other’s work for it to be au­then­tic and re­ally res­onate. Calvin Klein Collection opens July 1 at Lot 3.30, Pavil­ion KL.

Calvin Klein Collection Au­tumn/ Win­ter ’14

Fran­cisco Costa

Naomi Watts in Calvin Klein Collection

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