An exclusive interview with Peter Pilotto and Christopher de Vos - just prior to their London Fashion Week Spring Summer 2015 show.
Since 2007, Peter Pilotto, the London based label has been steadily growing their business and garnering a loyal world-wide clientele. This organic growth has proved resilient - so much so that the company has recently expanded and moved into a new spacious studio in the East end of London where Joyce was fortunate enough to conduct the interview.
We walked down a corridor which was of slightly haphazardly stacked with fluorescent multi-colour Perspex panels - giving us a “sneak peak” of what would be shown at the upcoming show ... The half Belgian - half Peruvian, and one half of the design duo, Christopher de Vos, gave us another hint;
“We went travelling in South America before the design process of the SS15 collection. It’s so important for us to see the world with our own eyes, not just through books.”
Fluorescent colour, perspex and tribal ethnic; the designers proved that they are no longer just about prints, which first put them under the spotlight to broad acclaim.
To the show: the panels which we saw stacked in the corridor had now been transformed into stained glass windows, being the context props of the catwalk. The colourful and architectural atmosphere set off by the stain glass windows echoed with their miniature counterparts on A-line dresses and roomy structured jackets. Tribal stripes clashed with intricate macramé and floral appilque. Never a literal interpretation from inspirations, instead it was a realisation of plethora of seemingly unrelated qualities onto fabrics. The same theory applied to their Autumn Winter 2014 collection: picturesque prints of snow-capped mountains were set off on a functional puffer jackets. According to Pilotto, the other half of the duo, it’s an interpretation of “extreme sports such as mountaineering, snow boarding and surfing— to portray the extreme conditions and climates in different places in the world.”
The balance between the “dream bubble” and the aspects of design and business has been the key to their success. Pilotto gave the credit to two contrasting cities;
“At the Royal Academy of Fines Arts in Antwerp where Christopher and I met, we learnt about the exploration of fashion. Then we came to London and set up our own label. Ever since we have been taught the reality of fashion by the retailers… but have been lucky enough to receive so much of their support”.
Joyce is one of the international retailers who has been nurturing the label in the Hong Kong and China markets. Hence we once again invited the designers back to Asia and to present their latest collections: both Resort and Spring Summer 2015 - to our customers and press. Both Pilotto and Vos were just as excited.
“Hong Kong has such a unique energy to the place, and the Joyce customers are so sophisticated and knowledgeable, that it is one of most look-forward to trips of the year! We also have a lot of close friends based in Hong Kong so yes, we are very happy to come back.”
Peter Pilotto is now available exclusively at Joyce.
Interview by Lucienne Leung-Davies
Designer portrait and video by Danny Sangra
Backstage and show photos provided by Peter Pilotto