Jonathan Saunders makes no compromises at DvF
Jonathan Saunders has no intention to compromise his designs at Diane von Furstenberg.
The Scottish designer was tapped as the brand’s first ever chief creative officer in May last year (16), five months after pulling the shutters down on his own eponymous label. Fashionista Furstenberg herself shared her confidence in Saunders at the time and almost a year later he has won critical acclaim for his collections, which he puts down to sticking to his guns when designing.
“I immediately saw the potential where you could elevate the product, focus on the design and ideology, and use prints and colours,” he told the San Francisco Chronicle. “There’s so much to explore in terms of accessories, which can all have the same ethos of effortless clothes with imagination. It’s a brand that’s inclusive, which celebrates diversity and giving the customer confidence to buy into fashion without feeling alienated about the product. I don’t want to compromise in terms of making practical, dumb clothes.”
He added that it is possible to create with a point of view in mind and avoid being “elitist or a snob” while doing so, and he’s certainly had enough experience doing this over the years.
Saunders pursued his fashion dream by studying at Central Saint Martins in London, where he met the late fashion icon Lee Alexander McQueen who invited him to work at his famous brand.
“Lee taught me to focus in on your own unique point of view. I was into the craft of screen printing, I was into colour. I love graphic art, popular culture, mixing those things together. I decided to start my own line,” he recalled. “The editor in chief of British Vogue took one of the dresses and put it on the cover of a magazine. That was a baptism of fire.”