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Close-Up preview: Q&A with design duo Christopher De Vos and Peter Pilotto

Drapers gives you an exclusive sneak peak of our Close-Up interview with design duo Christopher De Vos and Peter Pilotto, ahead of the full interview in this weekend’s edition.

Their views on…

…The high street
De Vos: “The interpretations we see on the high-street are so interesting. So simplified! It’s the pace now. We’re so product focussed we want it to feel luxury to the person that pays that money.”
Pilotto: “The good thing is if we talk to people who work on the high street the price restrictions on fabrics are a fraction of ours. In some cases their main fabric costs the same as our lining. It’s just different. There’s the aspiration which can be exciting [in as far as] you buy the copy and one day you can afford the real thing.”

De Vos: “It just doesn’t have to be exactly what we’re doing in store. I think you have to have respect for your actual customer. It [can’t] be just diluted because that defies the purpose.”
Pilotto: “It’s fun to have a different audience and nice to see young kids with the bags we did with Kipling.”

…Retail plans
De Vos: “We’d love to. It’d be a great way to express what we’re about, but first I think we need to grow the categories to make sure we’ve got enough stuff to put in the store.”
Pilotto: “It’s a different way to express ourselves and show variation in the range. It’s definitely something we’d love to do, but how soon it happens it all depends. We’d love to collaborate with artists or designers. The first would definitely be in London.”

…The signature prints
De Vos: “Every single print is engineered for the garment, so every garment has its own lay plan. We end up with 130 print files for production – even the printers in Como go mad. There’s been such a boom in digital prints in the past few years because you’re not restricted to one screen print – you can really develop layouts, place a print wherever you want it and get those amazing colours.”

…NewGen and CFE support
De Vos: “It allowed us to show and finance our collection but also learn about the whole business side. They mentored you through your sales or cash-flow meetings in a world that we never knew before.”

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