Jonathan Anderson: 'Loewe revamp had to be done'
Jonathan Anderson has defended his decision to drastically remodel luxury fashion label Loewe.
Appointed as its creative director in October 2013, the Irishman wasted no time ripping up and rebuilding the Spanish heritage brand from the ground up, refitting more than 180 stores globally.
"It had to be done. It has to be reset to a place that fundamentally feels modern because I want Loewe to last another 100 years," he told The Straits Times. "To restart a brand, you need to make people forget what it looked like and get them to believe that the brand was always like this."
Anderson, 31, makes no apologies for pushing the envelope at Loewe and is adamant that the concept of heritage shouldn't be confused with vintage. He is also confident that he will achieve his goal of making Loewe, which is owned by LVMH Group, into a household name.
"It's not there yet," he admits.
Anderson certainly thrives under the pressure and designs six collections - two for men and four for women - for Loewe each year, and another six for his own label, J.W. Anderson. And while he claims he doesn't sketch or drape in the mode of a traditional fashion designer, he is certainly getting a following for his sophisticated collections which incorporate flashes of wit and twists of humour.
For the Loewe F/W 2016 collection, Anderson presented playful black leggings, mesh skirts, rock star inspired T-shirts and cat-shaped tote bags.
"I'll never know how to cut a shirt. But I know what shirt I like. Fundamentally, I am a creative director, not a designer, and there's a huge difference," he said.
Anderson is a firm believer that luxury has to move at a faster pace in the Internet age, and sees the business as a survival of the fittest.
"The customer today needs newness," he added. "We always think the industry is too fast. But if you don't adapt, your modernity level will be incredibly low."
He is also working on introducing Casa Loewe, a new store concept for the brand which will be rolled out progressively worldwide. After Tokyo and Milan, Singapore is the third city in the world to have Casa Loewe, conceived as means of showcasing the brand's craftsmanship.