All of us who work in fashion know that much of the rest of the world thinks that what we do is silly. It’s a boring criticism, and we all argue otherwise, but if you think about it, fashion is silly at times. It’s also provocative, upending, challenging, and meaningful. It’s breathtaking. It’s beautiful.
In recent years, though, it’s felt like fashion has tried its hardest to prove it actually isn’t silly. The pressure designers feel to make a statement about the current political situation, our ongoing climatic disaster, the inequalities among people of different races and genders, and an age of war has in fact led to some extraordinary work, not to mention a reengagement of our industry with the broader culture.
But it’s also led to a sometimes dreary self-seriousness, one that foregrounds fashion with sloganeering. It’s easy to be self-serious. The more difficult path is remaining an engaged member of society while also, in one’s work, daring to return to a kind of creative innocence, to the state of wonder and awe we all felt when we saw our first transcendent show.
I always talk about trying to achieve that state of creative innocence—of fighting to stay close to that person who fell in love with fashion and its possibilities, of not succumbing to cynicism or world-weariness. I hope that spirit comes through in this collection: I hope people who see it can tell what fun the team and I had making it. I hope the joy we felt, of creating things, of getting to make beautiful objects that people will always remember, is evident in every coat, dress, and accessory.
I think we sometimes get defensive when our critics accuse us of just wanting to make beautiful things. But what’s wrong with wanting to make beautiful things? It’s not the only important part of life, of course, but it is a part of life. And to make truly beautiful things isn’t actually that easy. But it is a privilege—and I’m grateful for it every day.