October 6, 2006


hintmag interviews louise wilson, director of central st martin's fashion 2-year master's program:

... the 40-year-old mother of one has done so with an unorthodox teaching method that goes well beyond exacting. Former students have called it loud, brutal, abrasive and terrifying — even fascist. Reaching back, imagine the cane-pounding dance instructor in Fame ('You've got big dreams? You want fame? Well, fame costs. And right here is where you start paying. With sweat.), multiplied by ten in fearsomeness, dressed in a uniform of black and hurling insults laced with profanity.

"... I'd like someone to write a book about how American designers make their money. I'm not naming names, but how do they live in penthouses, employ their staff, have their shops and travel around the world—when they're not moving that much stock? There must be some fabulous tax dodge that happens in America. I've often tried to work it out. And then you have companies like Abercrombie & Fitch, which is exactly the same as Ralph Lauren, but with a loud soundtrack. I just went to an Abercrombie & Fitch store this morning — I was buying for my son — and thought, oh my god, it's like being in some ecstasy acid house.

What are you wearing?

A black dress that I designed many years ago to clothe my semi-deformed body. Thank god, because when I read all these bloody magazines, I wouldn't know if I have the right cropped nautical jacket, or if my trench is the right length, or how to be more boho. It's my Chairman Mao uniform. I have about 39 identical black dresses, and in white and taupe linen for when I'm in Bali. I'm also wearing a black Lanvin scarf, black knickers and black sandals. The jewelry and leather bracelets are Hermes.

... The forgotten thing about fashion today, and this makes me sound ancient, is we had to make clothes. Everybody in my generation remembers the horrible things we made in college to be different. Nowadays you will find a lot of people make nothing for themselves because it is cheaper to buy."

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