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Thread: Geoffrey B. Small

  1. #461

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    GBS thanks, great post(s), much to ponder. Which I will and will hopefully respond to. One comment for the moment is that I don't agree with Merz, although this is perhaps more how to do with how I receive information than as to the substance of that point. Perhaps. But a beautifully made garment, hand finished, hand-sewn, made from the finest, rarest fabric, is not just that. It is also hugely expensive and sold in a handful of stores in the world that 99% of the 1% (never mind the 99%) will even visit. If the maker of those clothes wants also to take a political stand, as GBS does, then I think it requires some independent, not just intrinsic, justification.

  2. #462

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    Quote Originally Posted by michael_kard View Post
    I've heard this opinion about H&M and consumerism quite a few times, however most of the people I know who go to H&M buy clothes because they look decent and are cheap. None of them buy new clothes every week, in fact they don't seem to be interested in buying new clothes at all, and buy new ones when they need them. I'm by no means saying it's always like that, but fashionistas who buy the latest high street copies are a very small segment of any high street's store clientelle - most people just don't give a fuck and want cheap clothes to wear.
    Maybe you should look into this a bit before making inane assumptions like this.

    Theres been research on how much British women throw away unworn clothing each year, I don't remember the exact amount but it was just appalling. 1 out of every 10 clothes was never used. The total amount of clothes thrown away was something like a million tonnes in a year - thrown into the trash instead of being reused or donated. I don't even want to imagine what the numbers for the US are. Another example; just a couple of years ago, H&M was caught destroying and throwing out brand new unsold clothes in the US. they stopped after the media caught on, but this had been standard practice for them. This is the type of lunatic behaviour which is fed by fast food fashion.

    edit: started typing the reply before Geoffrey had replied. There is a lot more detailed information in his post.
    "AVANT GUARDE HIGHEST FASHION. NOW NOW this is it people, these are the brands no one fucking knows and people are like WTF. they do everything by hand in their freaking secret basement and shit."

    STYLEZEITGEIST MAGAZINE | BLOG

  3. #463

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    There's nothing INANE about referring to what I've personally witnessed. Seems like "inane" is your favorite word.

    And no, I don't think it's the same everywhere. NY and London are two very big cities where a lot of extremes can be witnessed. Members of my family, my friends, my classmates at uni, they have all bought clothes from H&M in the past and they wear it to death. I have a t-shirt that I was given 3 years ago and it's still very much wearable. I don't know who those people who throw 30+ kilos of clothing a year are. (according to GBS and BBC's info that's roughly the average per person if you divide UK population/2 million tons.)

    Anyway, I'm by no means saying that fast fashion is a good thing, and to an extent I'm aware of its dynamics and personally I've chosen not to support it. But that's not what was being discussed.
    All I wrote was that there ARE people who simply buy clothes from H&M because they look good to them, are affordable to them, and they haven't considered or don't want to buy used clothing. In other words most people out there. Not everyone throws away clothes every week.
    ENDYMA / Archival fashion & Consignment
    Helmut Lang 1986-2005 | Ann Demeulemeester | Raf Simons | Burberry Prorsum | and more...

  4. #464

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    Quote Originally Posted by michael_kard View Post
    There's nothing INANE about referring to what I've personally witnessed.
    you said "but fashionistas who buy the latest high street copies are a very small segment of any high street's store clientelle" - this doesn't sound like a personal observation but an assumption. What actually is an inconsequential segment here is your friends, who you seem to be basing your entire viewpoint on. that is the part that is inane.

    All I wrote was that there ARE people who simply buy clothes from H&M because they look good to them, are affordable to them, and they haven't considered or don't want to buy used clothing.
    actually, you said fast fashion spenders are a small segment and that "most people" just want cheap clothes.
    "AVANT GUARDE HIGHEST FASHION. NOW NOW this is it people, these are the brands no one fucking knows and people are like WTF. they do everything by hand in their freaking secret basement and shit."

    STYLEZEITGEIST MAGAZINE | BLOG

  5. #465

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    You're right on both counts. I clearly need to look into this more.

    Anyhow, it's very hard for me to imagine who all those who throw away enough clothes to make the average for the UK 31 kilos per person are. Seriously, 30 kg? That's like 10 coats worth of clothing a year.
    ENDYMA / Archival fashion & Consignment
    Helmut Lang 1986-2005 | Ann Demeulemeester | Raf Simons | Burberry Prorsum | and more...

  6. #466

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    Wow! One hell of a great discussion. Can't read all now as I am helping one of those mass production companies with their tech packs ( but hey I gotta eat ). GBS, always a pleasure as usual!

  7. #467
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny View Post
    GBS thanks, great post(s), much to ponder. Which I will and will hopefully respond to. One comment for the moment is that I don't agree with Merz, although this is perhaps more how to do with how I receive information than as to the substance of that point. Perhaps. But a beautifully made garment, hand finished, hand-sewn, made from the finest, rarest fabric, is not just that. It is also hugely expensive and sold in a handful of stores in the world that 99% of the 1% (never mind the 99%) will even visit. If the maker of those clothes wants also to take a political stand, as GBS does, then I think it requires some independent, not just intrinsic, justification.
    The problem with your comments is that you are talking about the wrong 1%. It's not millionaires that buy GBS, but mostly middle class people that are dedicated to buying interesting fashion.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

    StyleZeitgeist Magazine

  8. #468

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    Yes to Johnny, thanks for your comments! I am not sure what you may be wanting me to do. I am a human being, and I like to think that I have and continue to do as much as I can with the resources and capabilities that I have available to me at the time. As a designer and an artist, I am trying to create a working model at the world level that can provide the very best in sustainable, ecological and ethical design, production and distribution practices available at the moment for a client that believes strongly in these principles and has the means, the vision, and the will to back them up financially in his or her wardrobe decisions.

    I am only able to do this because I have remained completely independent as a business operator and artist. I have limits on what we can do in regards to price and product volume and distribution, as an independent art business and micro-manufacturer, and I know myself at this stage of the game and my life too. I can provide the research & development model for the industry and I can limit our own production of our idea, and build it to the very best standards for a small group of market leaders in the world, who together can offer the maximum exposure in the proper framework at this time for our idea.

    And I can do it well, and hopefully, keep it working well for many years to come. taking care of all my working suppliers, associates, partners and community, all along the way. And in this business, that is not at all an easy thing to do. Believe me.

    That is my limit though. If you wish me to try and take that concept and offer it at "drastically lower prices to millions of consumers around the world" tomorrow - I think we are facing a whole new can of worms. In many ways, the very premise goes fundamentally against all of the principles behind what we have been able to do so successfully so far.

    First, you cannot escape the need for slavery and the lowering of ecological sustainability the minute you start going in this direction. Second, (and this has been fundamental for me in my reflection over many years on this subject), is who is going to operate and manage it? If you wish me to enter into a deal with H&M or Target or some sort of licensing arrangement or other with a large-volume low-price player - you are going to have to show me one of these players who would have even a sliver of the human, social and political commitment to be able to understand and execute the project, and even have a prayer to maintain what it is about, without turning it into just another lie and ploy to keep selling the same nightmare we are already stuck in in clothing, textiles and fashion today in the world. I for one, see none at this time. I hope you can understand my point.

    In the end, my work is also my art. And unlike many esteemed colleagues in the field have already done, I have no interest in being represented as an H&M, Target or Wal Mart "artist" or designer. And that also goes for the upper-end traditional big-name designer fashion retail, media and production company mafia with whom I have had the pleasure of dealing with for over 2 decades as well.

    As for politics, I let my art do most of the talking. Even though few customers can afford the originals. Picasso's "Guernica" has had its impact, but I'm sure you would agree Johnny, not very many people have ever had the access or the means, to buy the original painting either. And our art is not limited to clothes only, we do a lot with our Paris shows, which you have may have never had a chance to see or be a part of. Using this platform since 1994 we were the first in fashion to talk about issues from violence in America, recycling, redefinitions of luxury, war in afghanistan, war in iraq, pre-emptive war, neo-feudalism, growing illiteracy, individual activism, the dangers of nuclear power, and many other themes and messages which were quite political in relation to the norm of other designer presentations and collections, and more often than not, led us to be continuously banned by the major media and corporate fashion establishment.

    But that's fine with us and actually has been a blessing.
    We only want to be the best these days, not the biggest.

    And to achieve that, all of the very earnest, honest and extremely dedicated people whom I collaborate with to make what we intend to be the best handmade clothes in the world possible today- from clothmakers, to tailors, to retail shopkeepers, and yes even to me...all gotta eat, pay our rents, mortgages, bills and taxes and stay alive in this crazy industrialized world which just gets more and more unstable every day.

    And it just ain't going to happen if our work is only going to raise $29.99 or even 79.99 a piece to go around for all of us. We can only build 800 pieces in a year of what we do. You can do the math. And resources in the world are getting scarcer, but populations are growing. And that is the mission of what we are trying to tell the fashion world and the fashion consumer at every level. There is more to consider than just the first price on the tag. Things that look cheap, may be far more costly than you think in terms of how they will affect your life around you. What goes around comes around.

    And if you want to help us out or have any ideas Johnny, I am more than open to hearing from them, but I do believe we are doing the maximum we can. We have developed and maintain a working model at the Paris designer level for the world to follow. To expand it to more people at more accessible pricing and availability, the world needs to rethink about investing in human skills to train and develop a new generation of practicing tailors at the local level in every community who is able to maintain and execute the fundamental principles that our tiny firm has established and is practicing for our own small clientele. But I have no interest in dealing with any corporation that has grown by practicing the very opposite premises and human ideals than ours, and doubt I have the ability or resources to try to build an operation that would approach their size and scale in my lifetime. Been there, done that.

    You see dear friend, at my age, one begins to have to learn his or her limits. And remember after all, my name really is... Small.

    Thanks again for all your comments
    and best wishes,

    Geoffrey

    P.S. Next up some great news about our very good friends in London
    Last edited by Geoffrey B. Small; 12-09-2011 at 02:03 PM.

  9. #469

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    .







    We are very happy to announce that London's Hostem in Shoreditch,
    our exclusive authorized dealers for all of the United Kingdom, along
    with the phenomenal interior designers Hannah Plumb and James Russell of JAMESPLUMB,
    have been awarded the World 2011 Best Retail Interior Award at the prestigious
    World Architectural Festival in Barcelona in November. They were shortlisted and
    eventually selected from among five leading international project finalists including the Louis Vuitton
    Bond Street Store in London as well as the Chanel store in Soho, New York both of which
    were designed by the legendary Peter Marino.

    I agree with the Festival's decision. They deserve it. To understand why, if you have
    not been able to visit Hostem in London yet, I urge you to do so. From every single angle,
    it is unquestionably, one of the most innovative, forward-thinking, and beautiful new shops
    in the world today, and we feel very happy, honored, and privileged to have the chance to
    work with the firm and the great people behind it.







    On that note, I provide SZ readers an exclusive glimpse from our special handmade
    storybook made exclusively for the store, on the special collection of pieces which we created
    for Hostem in London this season. The views are digital, so naturally, much of the character of the
    handmade pages are lost. You can see the original if you visit the store. Nevertheless here on SZ, for
    those who have been following us, you can view some of our newest exclusives as well as
    some favorites and classics for those who are just now discovering what we do.

    Congratulations again to Hostem and JAMESPLUMB, and thank you for reading.

    Best wishes, Geoffrey












































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  17. #477

    Default For the record...

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    I am on the road to Paris now from Italy for our presentation
    on Sunday and posting this for the record in brief response to some of
    the heated comments made concerning our show on the Paris Menswear Schedule thread
    ref:(http://stylezeitgeist.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13333),
    Will also try to stop by this evening (and hope to see some of you) at the SZ Magazine launch event as well.
    Best wishes and thanks as always, Geoffrey





  18. #478
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    Did anyone get the chance to see Geoffrey's show?
    Would love to know what it is like.

  19. #479
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cremaster View Post
    Did anyone get the chance to see Geoffrey's show?
    Would love to know what it is like.
    Let's just say I've never had tears in my eyes at a fashion show. It was like reading Steinbeck. More to come soon.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

    StyleZeitgeist Magazine

  20. #480

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    For those of you who might have missed it. There's a few photos at for-tomorrows blog from the presentation:

    http://www.f-t.com.au/blog/paris-fas...small-fw-2013/

    Quality isn't all that good but until better pics turn up (Faust? Lowrey?) I guess these will do.










    i've seen things you people wouldn't believe

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