It’s no easy task to make a name for yourself working with a material seemingly impossible to reinvent again, yet designer FAUSTINE STEINMETZ did just that. Her unique take on denim as well as the definition of design lines shaping the iconic jean jacket and trousers has turned heads of the fashion scene. Her spring summer 2017 collection presented only a few days ago stole the show of the just wrapped London Fashion Week. Faustine who describes herself as an artisan sits down with Design SCENE Magazine to talk about her design process, philosophy she embeds in her work, her denim exhibition in Paris and the pace of fast fashion among other things.
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How did you first get interested in fashion?
Well I actually started out wanting to be an artist when I was younger, but I soon realised I did not have what it takes to be one! I struggled to do anything creative or meaningful. It was only when I was about 16 that I started cutting up my denim to make it into something else that I realised this was a good outlet for me.
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When did you decide to take the longer route, to make your clothes from the material to final stitch?
Not too long after I finished my MA at Central Saint Martins I remember walking around a store and I just found everything so flat… I felt like a way to be able to make something with real texture and depth was to make it by hand and this to me is what true luxury is… Having someone spend hours, even days making a piece just for me. There is something very special about that for me.
What impact would you like to generate? What is the philosophy behind your work?
I would hope that we influence the way people shop, I’m really into buying only things that I intend to keep for a long long time rather than buying several items and spending the same amount of money. I found it much more pleasurable to have that something special. I think that’s a little behind the philosophy behind the label, trying to make special pieces.
Your Slow denim exhibition in Joyce gallery, Paris showed how difficult is to produce a pair of jeans. What reaction did you want to make?
I really wanted to show the time that goes into some of the pieces we’ve made as we’ve made pieces that rival couture pieces in the amount of hours that they’ve taken to make and I’m not sure people really appreciate that it because at the end of the day it looks like a pair of jeans.
What is your attitude toward consumerism and the pace fast fashion sets on today’s designer?
It’s a little scary to think just how fast it all happens, but I think people’s attitudes are beginning to change.
What would you say is the best way to achieve sustainability in fashion?
I’m not really sure true sustainability will ever really be possible anytime soon… I think they best we can hope for at the moment is that everyone starts doing everything in the best possible way and I think we are starting to see this due to customers now becoming more vocal and the larger companies taking note.
Who is for you the most inspiring person in the fashion industry today? And why?
I have so many people in Fashion who I really admire, I guess at the moment it’s probably JW. Anderson. I find it very inspiring how far he has come in such a short period of time since he started his own label
What are you fascinated by at the moment and how does it feed into your work?
Like always, denim!
What is the biggest lesson that you have learned since you started your company?
Being a good designer will only get you so far, it takes a lot of hard work to get anywhere in this industry.
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