Interview with founder Wies Schutte.
What is the origin of the brand name ?
Of nowhere, except that I like to create dresses and it sounds good!
How would you define the INDRESS style?
They are easy to wear, women's parts, but with a little masculine. This is for example an English man in wool twill pants to fold broken door with a chiffon blouse or a sport parka with a pleated lamé skirt... It's a mix of elegance and simplicity. All punctuated by colors that are the starting point of each collection!
What inspires you?
Photos I've taken in the street, a face, a figure, but also work on the color of artists like David Hockney, Xavier Veilhan, Rembrandt or photographs of Mitch Epstein, Larry Sultan, William Eggleston. I also like faces, personalities like Romy Schneider, Lauren Bacall, Gena Rowlands...
How to start a new collection?
I start by imagining a colour palette, it is a very exciting moment! Colours are essential to my universe. The balance between the chosen colours must be perfect. Days can go by while looking for the perfect navy or green in my sample collection which I unearthed at flea markets or in my photography books. If I fail to find the right colour, I will directly dye the fabric in a pan. We have a cupboard full of dye jars, a real colour confectioner laboratory! I then send my colours to “Denis et Fils”, a factory which weaves and dyes our silk crêpes and satins in Lyon. Once the colour palette is defined, I sketch my designs according to my mood, free from any fashion trend or diktat.
Tell us about the material
Each collection consists of around 25 pieces, never more. For each design, the fabric must be unique in its colour and in its quality. I work with loyal suppliers such as “Denis et Fils” from Lyon who weaves my silk crêpes and dyes them in my colours each season or “Les Tissages Perrin” who creates my exclusive jacquard motifs. My woollen clothes are made in England or Italy.My designs are made in France, Poland and Croatie depending on the pieces.From beginning to end, I work with people that are passionate about their line of work and respect my high-quality demands. I love these encounters, these interactions, the human aspect.
How has INDRESS changed since its inception?
The original concept was very clear: create simple and refined products unavailable elsewhere. From our first reversible cotton bag with plastic handles which was developed into 50 colour variants to our flower brooch which is the INDRESS signature and which takes on different shades every collection. Each season the collections grow just a little more. To this day we have kept our code of conduct. The INDRESS company is slowly and gradually growing as it is a personal investment.
What is the INDRESS woman?
She is beautiful and happy, she loves color and elegance. Women who wear INDRESS are loyal, they have 25 or 60 years. What touches me deeply is the emotional bond that is created instantly between them and my creations. Besides, they make me blush everytime when they tell me feel always beautiful in my clothes. And it is also what makes me continue the adventure.
Who helps you in this adventure ?
We are still 100% independent. Maud Courault is now my associate. After being an intern at INDRESS, she stayed on and helped me throughout every collection. And with the boutique opening, we have a lot to do! We are four employees at INDRESS, Badia Aboura et Armanda Auricchio. Then we have wonderful interns who sometimes come and help us. There is also my partner, the director Frédéric Guelaff who, from the very beginning, created short films every season to beautifully tie the collection. These short films that he invents and directs are always magical and unforgettable moments which contribute to the collective brand memory. They add to the process of a collection. After San Francisco or Berlin, the 2017 autumn/winter collection short film was filmed in a photo studio in Montreuil as a making-of.
What are your next projects?
Animate the shop, but also to develop the men's collection that is in its infancy and imagine new collaborations like the one we have made with the painter Louis Granet, who designed scarves in silk in limited edition of 50 copies. INDRESS is both a mind and a large family which is full of ideas!
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