Inventing Fashion – Anoosh Naghibi
Anoosh Naghibi is a designer that has been making waves on Facebook. His work is cutting edge, avant-garde, quirky, unique, outside of the box innovation. Right up HM’s street basically so we tracked down the enigma that is Anoosh Naghibi for a glimpse into his creative mind.
HM: What was your background before you became a designer?
I was a successful engineer and I’d sold a patent for a plastics process to a US company and made a lot of money. I don’t make money as a designer though (laughs). I know I will do eventually but money is not my motivator. I actually feel embarrassed to think I will make money out of fashion because I think it kills the passion. I need to be true to the art first of all before even thinking about money. If it were about the money then I would have committed myself to some small design and gone into production. The main objective for me is to be as creative as I can be.
HM: Talk us through your design process.
Because of my engineering background I’m more interested in the function of the clothes and how it is manufactured. This is so important to see how and why it’s done. There are little details inside it rather than just looking at it from the outside. Uniqueness is key. I don’t care about wearability. I don’t want my models to be able to move in my garments, they are just sculpture. I actually see myself more as an artist than a fashion designer, I have no concept of trends and colour etc. It’s about being inventive with the materials and fabrics that you have. Fashion is not necessarily about new fabrics and trends.
HM: Tell hm how it was for you when you first started out.
I started out in menswear actually because I wanted to design for myself so I would stand out when I went out. So I started with t-shirts and ties and came up with some quirky ideas. Menswear is limiting though so I turned to womenswear because you can really express yourself.
"My mother is my biggest inspiration, she is my muse. She actually taught me how to stitch and how to use the machine because I didn’t study fashion."
HM: Do you see yourself opening a store?
Well some years ago I owned a menswear store. I’m quite aware of retailing it’s not as if I’m not aware. I’m old enough and have enough business experience. I mean I’m running a business alongside designing right now as well. It’s not like I’m living in some fashion la la land it’s about putting your foot on the ground, making a living and making sure you have time to do your art as well. If you have a passion for it. If you can make money out of it as well, then yeah obviously I’d like to make money.
HM: Do you have plans to show at London Fashion Week?
I mean yes if someone sponsors me and has a good venue then I’ll do it, but LFW for me is a little too much about hype. Artistically it doesn’t do anything for me because I feel like I’d become a puppet. Viewers don’t see the art in it, in that kind of setting. Don’t get me wrong for someone just starting out I think it’s a good idea. I’d rather do a good photo shoot, become quite personal with the models and strike up a rapport with them and photographers. So for me I think the way I’m working at the moment is right for me. Using facebook and other media works and I know how to exploit them.
HM: Do you have a muse, if so who and why?
My mother is my biggest inspiration, she is my muse. She actually taught me how to stitch and how to use the machine because I didn’t study fashion. She has always encouraged me especially after my second divorce. I went through depression and that’s when I decided to turn my hand to fashion.
HM: Name one movie and song that moves/inspires you.
Movie, Wizard of Oz! The dwarf’s clothes fascinated me. For song it has to be ‘Boogie Wonderland’ by Earth, Wind and Fire. You can instantly see some of my references in their clothes.
HM: What designers influence you?
Alexander McQueen, I don’t know his work that much but I really remember these jeans he made with a bleached crotch. It was soo simple but genius!
HM: For the graduate just starting out in the business what tips for success would you give them? Do it for passion for now, that’s the main driver!
For more on Anoosh and his work go to;Anoosh's FB Page
Interview by Enam G.
Photography provided by Anoosh Naghibi