It defines the creative and rational whole: Claire Dartigues is a French designer of origin, who now resides in New York. In addition to style, its flag is sustainability.
Claire, tell us a little about yourself.
I studied violin for 18 years, I love music, art and culture. In particular, the emotions can give. I did a lot of theater and I wanted to be an actress before becoming a fashion designer, for this psychological side: an actor must feel the character and step into the role! But I also like solving a math problem! I like foreign languages and different cultures; I speak English, Spanish and a bit ‘of Italian and Chinese! I create fashion for the people and not to follow a style or trend, I would like to help women to feel good in your body and in your mind. I am very sensitive to the issue of sustainability because I believe that we are all responsible for what happens around us and it is important to change our attitude and to protect the planet and people. Sustainability does not buy, you have to put in place. Dress smartly to live better!
What do you like fashion?
I like the fact that helps us to express ourselves, to express a feeling, a social status, financial status, an important event in our lives: everything through your clothes. I think it’s fascinating to see how people dress every day, like the emotions that fashion and creates the image that fashion be found in our society.
I’d like to develop a brand starting from the emotions of women and through colors, shapes and textures, meet their needs and feelings. I also try to develop sustainable solutions in my creations as ‘zero waste’ products, to zero waste.
Who or what inspired you to become a designer?
I grew up in a family of creative, and the women did everything by themselves. From home to tents to clothing for dance costumes. Also observe my parents help others, and to support social projects throughout my childhood was an inspiration that I want to be part of my creations.
How would you describe your style?
Comfort is very important and my style is a mix of classic and modern elements. I like the architectural forms mixed with classic fabrics and classic forms with innovative fabrics. I also love the colors, but they must be harmonious.
Paris vs. New York. What do you love these two cities? And why did you choose New York?
Paris is a beautiful city, rich in culture, art and history. New York is a multicultural city with fantastic architecture. I chose to live in New York because here everything is possible if you work hard and never stop believing in your projects. In New York, everything is moving fast and there are a lot of opportunities.
Theater, music and fashion then: When and why did you decide to become a designer?
Theater and music are part of my background, I never thought they could also become a job. I decided to be a fashion designer when I studied Business & Marketing, and I thought about how you could create the most beautiful clothes with a better fit for women. I never feel comfortable in my clothes, I was looking for solutions for a better fit and I realized it was not just that, it was also necessary to understand how a woman feels in her life, because even that influence his clothes. I then decided to study fashion design at Parsons to learn the apparel construction and to be able to one day develop the concept of my brand. When I studied Business & Marketing lacked the creative part, then study fashion design has been one of the best things you could do.
New York by Night! your first collection?
Yes it is.
Tell us about the collection of clothes: the inspiration, materials, silhouettes …
New York by Night! attraction is inspired by the lights of buildings at night in a big city, the lights on the colors and the shapes. Everything we see around us is determined by the intensity of the light, and I wanted to express how it changes with my clothes. All fabrics are upcycled, or I reused French luxury brand fabrics such as Louis Vuitton, Sonia Rykiel, and Chanel. The fabrics I used are tweed, crepe de chine, silk, wool … I also laundered white shirts Golden Boy look for some, they are the symbol of affirmation of women worldwide. The idea of a sustainable collection that uses luxury fabrics used to make people understand that sustainability can be elegant and stylish. The silhouettes are very feminine, with cinched waist, wide sleeves, dresses, flowing skirts. I also worked on the movement of tissues, with the clothes ‘skyline’ or the sleeves ‘Chrysler Building’. I was inspired by the most famous buildings in New York: the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building.
How was the response from the market?
I had a very positive feedback on the clothes line, the choice of fabrics, and also on the colors. At customers much like the coat and the ‘Skyline’ dress. They love the fact that the collection is very creative yet wearable.
What it means for you “sustainability” in fashion?
Sustainable fashion is an action of considerable extent, something that can not be overlooked by brand and by stylists. The sustainable fashion should be a normal thing, as the expiration date on food. It is a way to protect the planet and the people, but without interrupting the dream of fashion. It can occur at any stage of the Fashion System, from creation to distribution, it can be sustainable fabrics using recycled or upcycled, creations to zero waste, and sustainable materials without chemical components, for example. But it can also reduce the use of electricity, paper and chemicals. For me it is more a matter of attitude and money.
Describe your brand in 5 words
I have not officially a brand, but when I have is:
What kind of woman do you like to dress?
The women for whom drawing live in a big city, are always connected with the world through social networks, but also with real life through associations and community. They respect themselves and others, they are very sensitive to the environment and sustainability. They are also fun and always enthusiastic in everyday life. They love people and life. They love to smile and spend good times with family and friends. They love traveling to discover new cultures. They love to hike, ride a bike, walk or play sports that make them feel alive and fit. They listen to their emotions and follow your instinct.
Do you have a muse?
I have no real muse, inspire me the women in my family, those around me but also the actresses of the past like Jean Seberg, Audrey Hepburn, Brigitte Bardot, the ‘girl attitude’ of past generations (after World War II, in 90’s). I am fascinated by even the extreme personalities.
Tell us about the awards you’ve received
I won an award from Catherine Schuller, who founded ‘Runway the Real Way’, a movement that is fighting for diversity and equality in fashion. They were awarded the prize on the day dedicated to the Earth, Earth Day, at the Novotel Hotel in Times Square during a sustainable fashion show organized to support my efforts in fashion. An award that has great symbolic value for me, encouraged me to work more and more, it gave me a lot of confidence.
I am a semi-finalist at Eco Chic Design Award. If the final step (I will know in May), I will present my new sustainable collection in Hong Kong, in September. Here is the link to my concept . I also would like to develop my brand in the ’emotional’ way for women, collecting interviews, understand how they feel about their clothes, the colors, the shapes, in short, create a sort of documentary about people, and not only on clothing.