John Park: I had to rethink Natural Selection
John Park had to go back to the drawing board with his brand.
The designer helms Natural Selection, a label that started life as a men's denim line in 2009. Last year it branched out into ready-to-wear clothes, a move John says was critical.
"Initially, it was a really big success. But I was a little bit naïve, from a marketing and image point of view. I think it plateaued a bit," he confessed to Details. "I think that really was when I actually thought about who my guy is. What is unique about this brand? What can they see from the brand that I'm emphasising? And if it doesn't exist, what do I have to create to mark the brand? Create the whole design language almost from scratch. So I went back to the drawing board to define the man."
The RTW line features clean shirts, tailored shorts and plenty of denim.
John takes inspiration from all over; from Japanese to European looks, and he especially looks up to other labels that have a similar vibe to his.
"No one teaches you how to run a brand that's unique to your own aesthetic. I think it's inspiring to read all the stories, of Public School, who've had a second coming, or APC [that] took 15 years, or [how] Acne took their denim and plateaued and went up. It's comforting at the same time. I feel like I'm learning and engaging and building a business now, and that's all part of it," he noted.