As the first US-based stockist to carry Personal Effects, we're elated to not only present the brand to you, but also give the story behind it.
Meet Personal Effects...
- What are you most proud of with this current SS20 collection?
I think in terms of product the Float Jacket is a real stand out piece, as well as the fit there’s some really nice detailing. Also the cut and silhouette of the Parlour Trousers is great, very happy with both of those pieces.
- What is your design background?
My background is quite varied, I worked as a graphic designer in London for 10 years before moving across to fashion 4 years ago. As a graphic designer I was quite heavily influenced by the Swiss minimalist approach and I think these characteristic’s are also visible in the way we develop the collections as well as the detailing on individual garments.
- Do you ever feel the need to shy away from the seasonal fashion calendar? Have you ever felt keeping up with the seasonal collections rushes your creativity?
As a brand we're definitely trying to move away from the traditional seasonal fashion calendar, the current platform is pretty unsustainable — I think the future might be brands having more of a core collection that’s available all year round and perhaps releasing a small set of seasonal items as and when.
- Describe your creative workspace? Do you light candles, burn sage, hang art inspo? (Can you attach an image of the space?)
Our studio space’s have always been is pretty unusual, our first studio was at an old peanut factory in Hackney Wick, that was actually right next door to Christopher Raeburn. The new one is on the top floor of an old permanite factory (I’m still not sure what Permanite is), it has huge wall to wall windows so the room is always flooded with light. Part of the studio is used as our showroom and the other side is our workspace, I’d like to say it’s tidy but it’s generally pretty chaotic full of random items/garments we find at small London markets and weird vintage stores. The studio is also right next-door to Westham United’s football stadium, so match day’s can get pretty crazy.
- Do you travel for collection inspiration? Can you briefly describe the process for us?
Not intentionally, but I think when you do travel you can’t help but become inspired by what you see and what you’re surrounded by.
In terms of the process we always start by looking at the personal effects of an individual, for instance in our SS20 collection we broke down the effects worn and owned by 1950’s milk / dairy workers. The concept then flows through every detail of the garment, the buttons we used were made from a milk protein, the colours we chose referenced milk bottle tops and the fabric we used was inspired by the heavy twills and corduroy worn by tradesman in 1950’s Britain.
- Since beginning on this journey, what have been some standout moments for you?
I think there’s a lot of small moments as you grow as a brand that you feel are quite memorable but getting our first stockist in Japan was a pretty big moment, also a year later thanks to Well(un)Known we have our first stockist in America.
- Because of the COVID-19 outbreak, are you having to pivot your business model any for the coming AW20 collection? And even as far out as SS21?
Yeah the Covid outbreak has been pretty awful on every level, I know America has been hit pretty hard so my thoughts go out to you guys.
With regards to the effects it’s had on us as a business, I think we’re fortunate in a sense that we operate mainly online so people are still able shop with us. We might pivot our approach to online marketing a little but nothing major.
- Personal Effects stands for the items we carry on our person which allows for an array of product from denim to bar soap to pocket knives. How do you incorporate these vastly different products into each collection and make it all relate?
Each season the collections are inspired by the personal effects of an individual but sometimes we like an item so much that we introduce it into our core collection and make it available all year round.
We always aim to create items and garments that have a longevity and people would want to keep forever. Most of our favourite clothes are damaged and repaired due to years of wear and tear but we could never throw them away because they’ve become part of our identity, Personal Effects is to recreate that feeling.
- What confirmed your decision to have Well(un)known as a retailer for Personal Effects?
I think as a brand Well(un)Known’s is a brilliant idea and really well executed, but for us it was the people behind the brand that confirmed our decision, so thank you to Chris and the rest of the team for all your hard work.