Last spring, Andrew Marc tapped Richard Chai as their creative design consultant to help reinvigorate the heritage brand. His SS14 debut capsule collection for Andrew Marc has just arrived at Scoop NYC and IDOL had the opportunity to chat with the CFDA award-winning designer on how the collaboration came about, his goals for Andrew Marc, and the joys of design.
Image courtsy of Scoop NYC Instagram
HOW DID THIS COLLABORATION COME ABOUT?
I knew Stephan Budd, who is the President of Andrew Marc, prior to him being there. We’ve always been friends and when he came to Andrew Marc he said, “Hey, do you want to do something us? I would love to get you involved and help us reinvigorate the brand.” I said, “Yes, lets do it!”
HOW DID PREPARING FOR AW14 DIFFER FROM YOUR DEBUT COLLECTION?
Leather is typically perceived as a fall-winter material. For spring, I wanted things that were really supple, really light-weight, and papery-thin leathers. But for fall, it was all about shearlings, fur, leathers that were matte, leathers that had a grain, different thickness of leather. Their was more range to play with for fall.
HAS THEIR BEEN ANY CHALLENGES YOU’VE FACED DESIGNING FOR A HERITAGE BRAND LIKE ANDREW MARC?
Their really hasn’t been any challenges. The joy for me is designing and coming up with new things. Coming into the brand I knew the history and heritage. I’m very mindful and respectful of that, but I also want to bring my breathe to it and make it feel fresh and new. I want to challenge them in ways [they might not be used to], like white leather jackets and you think “Eww, white, really?” but its been such a wild success for them. I’m proposing new ideas, new materials, and a new way of doing things. That’s what I’m there for.
Read more of my interview with Richard Chai on idolmagazine: http://idolmag.co.uk/fashion-interview/idol-chats-richard-chai