Vogue Forces of Fashion

When it was discussed with me to attend the Vogue’s Forces of Fashion, at first I wasn’t into it as I’m not into aspects of luxury and high fashion. That’s not to say I don’t like nice things, I’m a sucker for a good tailored product and attention to detail and craft. But after seeing the lineup and that Kevin Systrom, Virgil Abloh, Heron Preston and Demna Gvasalia were talking it felt more relatable. We recently worked on Abloh’s ‘The Ten’ project with Nike and hearing more about trends, culture and how street and sports fashion meet high fashion.
These guys have been disruptive, challenging the perceived norms and breaking down the establishment walls, something that I feel passionate about for many reasons. The topic of many of our clients and brand meetings as of late.
I was there as an observer, not only listening in on the talks, but listening to the audience, comments, and side talks. Some even echoing the rhetoric of anti-digital, our lives are too fast and social media is ruining everything.
Here are a few takeaways that resonated with me…

Digital and the use of social media was at the heart of all the talks, which seem to align to the recent changes at Vogue where Alexandra Shulman and Edward Enninful have been taking shots at each other.

“Shulman will always be remembered as the editor who was in charge when Vogue missed the internet” Edward Enninful

See Guardian link:

Optimism seems to be an overall message from all the speakers and reference the general mood of the world and industry. A feel for optimism and the need for modernity.

Again, something that echoes with me, life’s too short to be overly critical or negative. It is amazing what we can achieve if we just believe it can be done.

In my opinion — diversity breeds innovation and creativity, and ultimately business growth and success. Many brands and organization adapt to change at different speeds while others none at all or too little too late. The question is, how to do you protect core values while evolving? That’s the challenge. Change is the only constant and if you fail to adapt or stand for something you’ll be left behind. It’s easy to carry on with the norm but to change takes the effort.

Can’t wait to see what Edward brings to the brand and in turn to the fashion world.

Reinventing what is fashion (Abloh & Heron) as they haven’t come from fashion backgrounds

Courtesy of Vogue

Future of ethical fashion
Stella McCartney with Tonne Goodman

A very compelling talk, progressive in her views and the need for ‘Modernity!’, stance and not afraid to talk straight and about the challenges ahead of the industry and us people.

She talked a lot how technology is sexy, she travels the world working with tech companies on how to be more ethical and environmental. And is working closed Bolt Threads in SF were they manufacture silk as well vegan leather and innovative materials that we use to create our signature handbags, accessories, and shoes — all of which are PVC free.

“Fashion is the second biggest polluter after the oil industry.’


‘We generally solve questions as Stella McCartney’
“Refuse to given into fear”
“Change needs to be embraced”

Fashion in the age of Instagram.
Marc Jacobs, Kevin Systrom and Sally Singer

Marc talked about he’s only recently joined Instagram, and in past shows prohibited the use of iPhones, etc at his show, as he wants the viewer to appreciate the show first hand rather than through their devices. And he enjoys experiences first hand and visceral but know understands that every uses devices to be and enhance and enrich their experience.

‘You should only be afraid of what you didn’t do not what you’ve done’ when asked he’s he ever posted thing of Instagram and later regretted or taken down. He lives in the now, and when he accidentally posted a picture of his bum instead of messaging to someone, he just rolled with it and appreciated the moment for what it was.


‘I thought social media was antisocial’ Marc Jacobs
‘This is our experience now’ Marc Jacobs
“I was able to meet a bunch of young fashion enthusiasts to learn how they use Instagram to find inspiration” Kevin
“i learned how to run a company from the youtube” Kevin
“Instagram is seven years old this week (last week)” Kevin
“We are one of the few brands that view the world in an optimistic way” . Kevin
“How can Instagram be a force for good — technology for kindness”
“We should stand for craft, and we value code a beautiful” Kevin Systrom

Being the first-name terms with the word
Michael Kors and Virginia Smith


“I like being a problem solver” Michael Kors
“Empathy is everything” Michael Kors (shame he isn’t empathic of animals)

Can you keep cool…cool?
Virgil Abloh and Heron Preston with Chioma Nnadi


“Cool is when it surprises you” Virgil Abloh
What is luxury? (in response to supreme and Louis Vuitton from Chioma)
“Luxury is coveted” Virgil Abloh
“And Luxury is street wear now”
“Self-taught is the new fashion industry” Virgil Abloh
“Cool kids want to be rich; rich kids want to be cool.” Heron Preston
“Cool isn’t owned by one person, it’s fostered by a community” Virgil Abloh
“Be yourself”
“The entry level to fashion was too high, so we ignored it” Virgil Abloh & Heron Preston
“The internet is what we call the influencer Gulfstream” Virgil Abloh — in response to traveling and collaborating so much
“I’m indebted to the fashion history, the future is to open the doors and push things forward” Virgil Abloh
“Fashion and hip hop — both are linked to the street and mirror each other” Virgil Abloh & Heron Preston
“Fashion is democratic.”
‘Age doesn’t matter, information and knowledge is key’ Virgil Abloh & Heron Preston

Disrupt, Disorientate, Doing it His Way
Demna Gvasalia with Sarah Mover


“We are obligated to be optimistic” Demna Gvasalia
“History is very intimidating” Sarah Mover
“Creative people are angry”
While wearing FBI jacket at Balenciaga show ‘Why are you wearing it?’ ‘I’m investigating.’
“Listen to younger people they are so informed” Demna Gvasalia

NikeLab x "OFF-WHITE" - Rosie Lee
We were asked to act as creative leads for the London release of Off-White and Nike's The Ten, a series of iconic Nike…rosieleecreative.com