How I got in touch with the design duo Bruce Franklin… I’m not exactly sure. I’m not positive if he was the designer who tweeted me shortly after I began tweeting Coco and Breezy but no matter how I met him I am aware that in my first semester of college I talked to him quite a bit, discussing plans of mine with the blog and listening to him talk about creating his collection which is now on sale. Now that I think about it, I laugh as I remember how he would call me Mr. Info. I was always reading an article that he had to read, hearing about a stylist to get him in touch with, I had some idea or another at every moment. Enough about that though, we have below interview questions that I sent over to the duo and their accompanying answers. I do hope you like what you read.
See the interview below the clip.
Name: Chris Chaun and Bruce Franklin
Product: Bow Ties
Label Name: Robot&Brucling
Number of Years in the Industry: 4 Months
Claim to Fame: Reinventing the bow tie
Favorite Piece that You Have Designed: Its a piece we haven’t released yet.
Favorite Designer: Karl Lagerfeld
First thing, how did you guys get into designing?? Have you always been the stylistic ones in school?? Did it just evolve from that?? Did you go to school together?? Before this venture had you designed before?? I know you were involved in the fashion industry before you began this initiative, did that push you into designing??
We were working on separate collections and decided to work together. We were regarded as style leaders of the pack in our high school of 5,000+ students, introducing high end designer labels to the classroom, lol. Teachers hated it… Always asking where we got money to pay for such luxury. We both designed informally for years and worked in fashion, so evolution takes its course naturally. We’re sure all experiences count for something; a bit here, the rest there…
How do you go about designing?? What are some of your influences?? Also how did you find out your design style?? Do the two of you have the same style??
We’re visionaries so our discussions are our sketch sessions and then we free-hand together once our fabrics and findings have been chosen. The current collection was designed this way and we felt no need to stray from a seamless process. Our design style is a no brainer; we design from emotion and typically agree on ideas because we think of them separately and approach each other with the same idea… telepathic communication, seriously. Art and history are our predominant influence, so we have similar style.
What made you pick bowties?? Why not any other accessory??? Do you have plans on expanding the line??
We love bowties, so it was a natural choice. Whats the difference between jeans and ties? If they look good, wear em. Right? Our line is the beginning of our developing brand.
When you began to design this collection specifically what were some of your emotions during that time?? Is there an accompanying story line?? Do you have a name for this collection? Did both of you work on each individual bowtie??
The ties are a reflection of the emotions we felt at that time and this is to be translated by the individual who wears them; we’re artists, they’re art. The collection is cohesive because of a balance, a co-existence of two sides to a story. We decided to name the ties individually and each one has a backstory. We chose not to create a name to box the collection inward… Yes, we work on everything together-
You guys are both in Boston now correct but you commute to New York?? How is this?? How has the initial reaction been to Robot and Brucling?? How is the Boston fashion scene??
We commute 8hrs driving to and from New York weekly in most cases for the obvious reasons as designers. The scene here is surprisingly alive, but in a more upscale manner, fairly pricey shoes hitting the streets and fancy coats in the fall and winter. Look up the roster of stores here, they don’t exist for no reason… lol. We’ve been very fortunate with the immense amount of support our label has received thus far.
Who are you designing for?? ? Does branding come into the equation when you begin to design?? Have you begun to assemble a team??
We design for those who want more and its hard to reach your peak of creativity thinking of what people want all the time; we introduce them to what they really want. We had imbalances in the beginning, but respected each other always and worked to be more balanced, to be real partners… Our designs always make sense for our brand, so no team outside of us has been decided on.
Do you have any views on the rapid changes that are occurring in the fashion industry?? This pertains to the rising in influence of the fashion blogger, the democratization of the industry which is signified by the wider audience that fashion shows are presented to, and the perceived loss of prestige of what once was regaled as the bibles of fashion, magazines. Do you see these things as positive or negative?? How do you attempt to deal with them as you grow your business??
As time progresses, things change, some to the benefit of the present. Yay @blogs… We must remain true to ourselves and as we do this, we only grow with time and in harmony with everything going on, no matter what the level of agreement.
If I were to introduce you to someone just out of high school who wanted to get into the designing business what would your advice be to this person??
Be yourself. Let nay-sayers inspire you.
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