Introducing our new special TEN TO TEN on bungalow-journal where bungalow owner Uwe Maier interviews 10 important people in and around the fashion industry by asking them 10 questions to provide an insight!
Interview No. 1 : Mr. Michael Bastian
Mr. Maier: Do you have any Style rules? What do you think about?
Mr. Bastian: There are very few definitive rules when it comes to style. Actually, it’s more the definition of style to be able to break the rules effectively.
Mr. Maier: We’ve been impressed by the quality of your collection. What does quality mean to you?
Mr. Bastian: Quality to me really is anything that you could wear for the next ten years and never grow tired of– I love things that only get better with age the more you wear them.
Mr. Maier: Fashion Week is over, how was it for Michael Bastian? And-‐ talking about the Fashion Week in New York: What or who do you think is the reason for the renewed relevance of NYFW?
Mr. Bastian:Now that New York Fashion Week is over and I’ve had a little time to recover and gain some perspective, I have to say I’m really proud of both of our collections this season. For our main designer line, Michael Bastian, we really pushed ourselves to present a new modern interpretation of ‘dressed up’ and I think our message was well-received. As for GANT by Michael Bastian, I feel that collection keeps evolving every season and the personality of both the women’s and men’s lines are coming more into focus. Plus I think the fun we have designing that collection really shows in the end result.
Mr. Maier: What do you think distinguishes men from women when it comes to fashion?
Mr. Bastian: When it comes fashion and the psychology behind how they shop, men and are the complete opposites in many ways. The goal for most men is to look like themselves, only a little bit better. Men are very reluctant to stray too far from what they are used to. As for women, they are much more comfortable exploring different personas and sides of their personality. They’re much more free with experimenting and trying new things.
Mr. Maier: You’ve been Men’s Fashion Director at Bergdorf Goodman for five years. Although living a dream right now of having your own brand and company-‐ do you miss working for a multibrandstore? (different styles, different designers ect.)
Mr. Bastian: I do miss a few things about working for a big department store– mainly the chance to be on the floor and see how the customer really shops, what they’re looking for, how the whole experience is for them. This was the best thing about my Bergdorf job– my office was right off of the selling floor and I really got a good education just observing.
Mr. Maier: Who is your style icon?
Mr. Bastian: My style icon is the late JFK Jr.– to me, he really epitomized the way modern men look best, mixing casual with formal pieces.
Mr. Maier: James Dean has been the inspiration for your latest collection. He stands for the american way of life. Why do you think men in Europe should get inspired by James Dean?
Mr. Bastian: I think James Dean represented a few very strong ideas that are relevant to men all over the world– that combination of talent, innocence and rebellion hit a lot of emotional buttons for many men. He also remains fascinating to us because we never got to see how the story would end– all we got was an amazing first act.
Mr. Maier: You really travel a lot, I can imagine. What is the most important thing for you on a trip?
Mr. Bastian: When I travel, the most important thing for me is to be very protective about my personal time. I’m not one of those people who goes out every night when I’m on the road– usually I’m working and really need to make sure I’m rested and focused each day for work. My ideal travel night is room service and a bath, followed by a good book.
Mr. Maier: You only work in Men’s Fashion like I have been doing for the last 6 years. My latest project is on women. What about you? Can we expect a Michael Bastian women’s wear collection in the future?
Mr. Bastian: For the moment, I’m fine with just doing women’s for our GANT collaboration. Perhaps somewhere down the road we’ll introduce Michael Bastian women’s, but for now, I’m more focused on perfecting what we do for men.
Mr. Maier: What’s the best advice you ever got?
Mr. Bastian: The best advice I ever got was to wear a pink shirt when you’re hung over or just feeling under the weather. Everyone looks better and more alive in a pink shirt.
Thanks to Mr. Michael Bastian!