Nicomede Talavera didn’t look at the future for his FW15 collection, but rather traveled back in time to re-explore and celebrate his MA graduate collection. He tells us about octopus pants for ravers, refining his eye, and designing womenswear.
What was the starting point of this collection, what did you look at for FW15?
It really started with my MA collection, and it was just purely because it felt like the right time to look at the work again. It was really about building this whole nostalgic memory of me growing up; then me graduating from the MA, and just going to the next progression in my career, really.
What do you think are the main elements from your MA collection that came back into this collection?
I think for me, it was kind of like a repetition of what I’ve done before, and there are loads of things where I reflected back at that moment in time. I was looking at sportswear and the way that tradition is mixed with it. So, there were a lot of poppered trousers, which is kind of an Adidas reference, and the octopus pants that ravers used to wear (I actually owned a pair), and all those tracksuit details which we kind of knitted in with what was already there. But you know, the MA collection was all about proportion — the layering — and what I wanted to do now, was to use fabric like corduroy, but different ones this time, to give it a different texture. With what happened with Louise, it was something that I really wanted to celebrate, and I feel like not many people really do celebrate the moment of their MA collection.
What do you think you have improved on most since graduation?
I guess every time you do something, you improve, and you learn constantly through mistakes. It was interesting for me to go back to that MA collection and to see how I was cutting back then, and compare it to how I do it now; I think my eye is a lot more refined [in terms of cutting].
Where did you really struggle with this collection?
I don’t think that there was so much of a struggle, but rather that there was always a constant doubt. For me it was like, ‘okay, I’m looking at my MA collection as a starting point’ and I was always thinking: “How could I make this collection better?” I’ve always wanted to do a collection that meets my MA collection in terms of how I think and how I pursue things in my head. I think the thing that you always struggle with, is balancing production and doing a new collection.
Do you start working on new ideas for following season, while designing your current collection (so SS16 when you work on FW15)?
I think what happens is that there are hundreds of ideas every season. Some even came from my SS14 collection or my MA collection; there was this archive, and loads of stuff that was just dismissed with this collection that I could easily make for the next collection. It’s just really a progression.
Are you gonna do womenswear?
No, I’m not! I do have two womenswear stockists, but I haven’t designed it yet. Potentially my collection is womenswear — if a woman chooses to wear it, that’s fine by me! I really want to focus on my core, which is menswear for now, and then we’ll see what happens in the future.
What are your views on fashion at the moment?
I tend not to think about what is going on too much. I think it’s quite important to look at the past more in fashion and to continually inform yourself about where it originated, and knowing the history is really important.
What are your plans for the future or the next season?
Well I think that now would be a good time to explore just one element of my work. It’s quite important for me to grow the business organically as much as possible. I’m in no rush to jump before I walk so I’ll just take it step by step, and enjoy it! If you don’t, what’s the point?
It’s a rollercoaster ride.
Yeah it’s got a lot of ups and downs for sure, it’s a lot of hard work, but you know, surround yourself with a good team, and have great friends and family that can really support you outside of it, because you need that.
I remember you said that the next season sounds so futuristic which is so true; 2016, it’s not even summer or spring yet!
I know, and we’ll be making SS16!
Any good plans tonight?
Well I’m pretty hungover after the show, so maybe not today, I’m concentrating on production and sales and getting my head down for the last hurdle of the season.