AGOLDE’s Creative Director Karen Phelps
Inspired by our latest fashion shoot featuring the wonderful denim brand, AGOLDE, we kept on doing denim – all day long. The result of this endless love we proudly present here: We were pleased to talk with the creative mind, AGOLDE’s Creative Director Karen Phelps, about all the things that matters – what the brand stands for, the connection to LA and which advantages denim offers in the matter of style. So keep on reading for more blue moments…
For what does AGOLDE stands for?
K.P. AGOLDE embodies an irreverent attitude and creative spirit that speaks to a diverse cross section of fashion forward millennials. We recently launched a biannual editorial magazine, EIGHTY-NINE, which focuses on the concept of highlighting youth culture and individuality. The magazine gives attention to emerging talent and shares the history of those that have inspired young creativity today. Our goal is to build on our strengths, evolve into a Global brand with a loyal customer following and continue to tell the story of those that inspire us.
How would you describe the LA style the brand is connected with?
K.P: Los Angeles is in the middle of its own cultural revolution. It's strong sense of its cult personality and individualism are ongoing points of reference. The city has become a source of inspiration for its generation.
Where do you take your inspirations from?
K.P: Having grown up in the in UK during the 80's and 90's I was exposed and inspired by multiple UK subcultures from music to fashion. The New Wave Indie movement embodied by Primal Scream, The Jam and The Smiths, right through to the massive club culture scene of the early 90's and Factory records are all familiar points of reference in my work and personal life. My career has been primarily focused in the US, so combining both experiences and moving them forward make them relevant to my creative direction.
Denim is …
K.P. an individual expression.
What are the trends or style guide lines the brand follows?
K.P: No hard and fast rules. Inspiration and reference points are collated from a multitude of resources. Music, flea market finds, art, social media research and people on the street. It's ongoing.
How do you develop your knowledge of trends and fashion forward thinking? K.P: It's really difficult to explain but it's gut instinct.
An AGOLDE jeans from its idea to the final creation: What are the main steps a denim has to run through until it comes to the final product?
K.P: I start each season by researching fabric and identifying key fits for the collection at the same time, as both go hand in hand when designing denim. The team then builds out concept boards outlining our message for the season, and making sure that both the men’s and women’s collections are aligned. Our working boards are also a continuous reference point to stay true to our original design intent and ensure a cohesive collection. We then start wash development and partner with our in-house laundry, testing new fabrics for the season and building out shade ranges. I am always on the lookout for versatile fabrics that have a wide range as it’s important to define key fabrics that our customers will become familiar with and also speak to our brand aesthetic. It’s not just about how a fabric looks but also how it feels and works back to our fit offer. We spend a great deal of time perfecting the new shapes to ensure that our fits are the best in the market.
What is your style advice to make a denim look your own?
K.P: Mixing it up and there are no rules.
Denim goes in 2017 solo or do you wear the look from head to toe?
Any style rules you want to pass forward?
K.P: Build up a wardrobe of staple silhouettes and find a good tailor. I purchase a lot of vintage and flea market pieces. If you fall in love with a shape or wash and it's too big... Don't leave it behind, take it to a tailor and have it altered. Some of my favorite pieces have gone through reinvention.