This time should be the 2469th time that I say I love LN-CC so much about their aesthetic, their brand selection and for sure the store design by my favourite set designer Gary Card. After the store opening 2 years ago they decided to create a brand new space for displaying their accessories selection to the customers individually and also refurbish the light room. I was very surprised when I saw a new beaded giraffe skeleton by Our Exquisite Corpse but couldn't be more excited to meet designer Damir Doma in their new space for a short interview. I had a very great time with him and I am sure you would like to know more about him before he shows his coming FW2013 collection in Paris in a month time!
How do you feel about Dalston?
It’s strange. It feels like a different city. It should not be called London. It should be just called Dalston. Even there is no underground but the area feels very multi-cultural! It’s interesting!
So How do you feel about the LN-CC store now?
First of all I have to say I love LN-CC. I have never been to the shop because every time I come to London it’s always for a short moment for meeting and stuffs. And the store is a bit far for us. It’s a bit complicated.
I knew the store from the photography. In real life it’s just much nicer than the pictures. There are lots of identity and personality in the store and the bar.
So which room is your favourite?
I have to say it’s the new shoes space because it’s a great opposition of the place like the room we are in. It’s a bit more sophisticated and soft, but also warm and cozy.
I really like the feeling of each room is representing a different world and a little bit of a different concept, like this room (the Light Room) is almost like a gallery space. It’s so different to the room next to us which is about concrete and the one next to it is very open constructed with the wood. It’s very interesting and the club is fantastic!
Yes! It wasn’t like this before!
So it’s new? I can imagine they would have great parties here!
How did the relationship between you and LN-CC start actually?
We started long time ago before LN-CC was born. When John Skelton (the creative director of LN-CC) was working for other shops and department store. He picked up my collection since the very first season and I think we share a lot of references and ideas about fashion and streets and all these things. Just step by step. We both started quite small and growing at the same time. It’s really a fantastic experience.
Let’s talk about the exclusive range you offer LN-CC customers to pre-order. Is there any future exclusive range you are thinking of doing for LN-CC?
At the moment we don’t have anything plans. As I just said we are very close. There are always opportunities to collaborate on a more special way. It’s a good idea!
I would like to know more about your design as I always see something new and different every time I see your collection. Do you see every season as a separate project or you see them all together as a story?
It depends. I think it’s important to have a strong backbone in the collection and also identity to define who you are and what your aesthetic is, but at the same time I think it’s important to challenge yourself. I want to challenge myself, not just my customers but also myself as an artist and a designer. I want to move on and not be stuck in one box.
If you know my collection in detail, for example like overall, the collar of the jacket, the kimono sleeves and the pleated pants. You will find these in every collection. There is very strong core in the collection that I am repeating quite a lot. I think it’s important to keep the strong identity if you change the surface every time.
How do you see the relationship of the menswear and the womenswear?
If you look back to my first womenswear collection, they were very much born out of the mens, especially the first season of womenswear collection was extremely conceptual. It really took me about 4 seasons to express my women into a type of women and think about the character, who she is and what she does.
Let’s talk about the second line Silent, I read an interview and you mentioned the beginning of Silent was is an offer of what you would like to do in leisure time But now I feel it’s more like a down-to-earth collection. How do you see Silent actually?
Silent started very much as a product. It’s very much product driven, very much about jersey and just for the reason to have an offering that is more accessible for people because I remember that the time when I started more than 6 years ago. I was 24/25 years old and there were a lot of people who could not afford the mainline pieces especially the young fashion students that people who really love the would I did but they could not buy it. So that was the idea to so something more reachable and accessible. That’s how we started just doing the jersey products, t-shirts and sweatpants, sweaters and stuffs like that. The echo and the result were so good and so positive and it just started to grow. Season after season we started to add certain product groups and it reached the moment. 2 seasons ago suddenly there was a full range and now we need to give it a whole identity because it’s not enough to do the same thing like you do the main line but just offer a cheaper range.
So do you see them very individually now?
I see them as the same person but I see them in different purpose. If you just look at the main line pieces they are very sophisticated. I think you can’t be dressed like this everyday. One is a bit more casual and the other one is more sophisticated.
I would like to know more about the Paris flagship, How did it happened? Do you see it as a showroom or a huge Damir Dome world to display to the world?
First of all, it’s a business so I need to survive. Second, it just displays my universe. It explains my world a little bit better than a multi-brand store because not all the multi-brand store offer you space like LN-CC. There are lots of shops just go to every showroom and always buying the same selection. Sometimes it very difficult to get a good visibility in multi-brand store to really show what you want to do and what you work is about. I think our own boutique is just great for that and I also think it also helps not only the people who come to the store, but also other people who buy the collection maybe in Japan or China and Australia to understand a little bit of the materials and the aesthetic. It really explains the collection in a different level and makes it more 3 dimensional from the clothes to the fabrics and also the wood and the stone, the music and the smell, to make it a coherence world.
Is there any plan to open a new store in Asia then?
China is a fantastic market, so I guess there is a plan to do something. There are two really interesting markets, one is the US, it’s a really big big fashion market. The other one is definitely Hong Kong.
At the end I was sharing my experience of Antwerp and I could feel his love for the city after staying there for 2 years. He also recommended us to some furniture shopping in the city. I look forward to my Belgium trip again in May and also a visit to Damir's paris flagship. If conversation could share energy to each other I believe I have got some positive energy from Damir and I hope he got some of mine at the same time when we talk. I wish he enjoys his Asian trip in summer and look forward to meeting him again very soon!
Special thanks Xiao Xiao from LN-CC for the arrangement and just email the store if you would love to feel the new spaces in person! You must be surprised when you see the skeleton in real!
To know more about LN-CC, please visit their website