German designer Philipp Plein founded his namesake luxury fashion label in 2008 and continues to make headlines season after season with his spectacular runway shows. Celebrities like Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and Naomi Campbell are fans of his provocative and statement looks. Though a bevy of influential women wear his designs, who exactly is the Phillip Plein woman? According to the designer, she is “strong, confident, independent and is not scared to show off her style and beauty. A woman with charisma and self-awareness. Sexy – with a strong sense of fashion.”
Though most recognised for his iconic skull and crossbones, Plein’s designs are also inspired by the gentler notion of his passions and dreams. His latest fall/winter collection blends blocks of neon with a unconventional twist on country-western. The result is a bedazzled mix of saloon-style buckles, cowboy boots, dramatic fringes and neon tartan.
Initially trained as a lawyer, Plein started exploring his interest in architecture and art by launching a design company when he was just 21 years old. “ I never expected to end up being a fashion designer but I love to create, and what I prefer about fashion compared to design is that fashion allows me to create 6 collections a year and more. I keep dropping new items and special editions. In design, a sofa lasts 20 years. This gives more space to my creativity and of course, more profit,” he said.
2019 is proving to be a big year for the designer, with the brand’s 20th anniversary on the horizon and the recent debut of his first flagship store in the region. Located at Marina Bay Sands, the two-level duplex has separate entrances for the men’s and women’s areas. In an interview with Female, Plein shares his thoughts on his most recent collection, Singapore and the fashion industry.
What’s your favourite piece from the FW19/20 collection and why? Can you share an anecdote about it?
I love all the collection, it’s really difficult for me to pick an item or look as a designer it’s strongly attached to all the items he creates, as you can imagine. But for sure what I loved is the vibe in general. We were able to create a very consistent collection with a clear identity. To me this is the main success. Puffer jackets in multi colour are one of the most iconic items as it’s a modern rendition of the theme and also because they are a capsule collection dedicated to the 20th anniversary.
Read more on the next page.
Congratulations on your 20th anniversary. What has been the most memorable runway show for you?
Thank you! All of them! The most spectacular ones are my favourite, like the rollercoaster ones and the jet-ski ones. In my shows I make dreams come true. My childhood dreams, like cowboys and superheroes.
What do you think is the most exciting thing happening in fashion now?
Great production is key. The collection is the heart and focus but I like to build a world around it to make my customers experience what my brand DNA is and what I want to present through my designs.
You do a lot of collaborations with musicians. What songs/artists are you currently on your playlist?
I love rock music. Lately, I listen to rock more than hip hop and I am pretty much into AC/DC and other classic bands.
Complete this sentence: “You’ll never see me in…”
Brown classic shoes
Why did you choose Singapore and how does the local fashion sense tie in with your brand?
Singapore has always been one of my favourite destinations in South Asia. I could never have dreamed that I would have such a beautiful store at Marina Bay Sands. I am deeply happy to be here and I believe that my fashion fits perfectly with the demanding and international clientele from this beautiful country.
Do you think the Asian woman dresses differently from others? And if so, how have you catered to that preference?
Asian women risk more maybe, but in general, what connects all the markets is the same attachment to the brand and luxury.
These limited edition pieces are available in store now:
The Philipp Plein store is located at #B1-146 The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands.