W Hotel London held the third event in a series of monthly breakfasts that not only feed the belly, but inspire the soul. Intended to bring together London’s tastemakers in music, fashion and art to W Hotel’s patrons and local curious minds, Ideas for Breakfast is worth waking up early for.
This Sunday’s session, Precious Fashion, brought together fashion heavyweights Judith Clark and Jane Howard to discuss the later’s new project, the Archivist Magazine. Howard presented her vision on how to tell a fashion story without compromise.
What is the most striking feature of the magazine is that it focusses not on the current fashion collections, but on the past garments and collections of great designers. No clothes in the magazine are available for purchase. Instead, the publication produces a secret desire by presenting exquisite objects styled and shot in a very contemporary way. In today’s world, where designers are working around the clock on seasonal collections and now sometimes pre-collections to cater to ever-hungry consumers, to deny the satisfaction of buying a product is a daring move.
Fashion director by trade, Jane, first and foremost, launched the magazine for herself and the people who worked on it. She wanted to offer a blank canvas for work in the purest sense, without answering to anybody else (this includes advertisers – there are no commercial messages in an issue Zero!).
There is no rigorous schedule for subsequent issues. The next Archivist will most likely come out in January 2013. Every shoot, every editorial in an issue is Howard’s and her team’s labour of love. And I could believe it: Howard’s elegant and understated styling is a welcome relief from the popping simulacra of today’s mass-run fashion publications. She focuses on bringing historical objects back into desirability by interpreting them in her own way. And it works. Archivist reminded me that perhaps the inspiration I am looking for is not to be found on the racks of Paris, but in Wendy Dagworthy’s treasure chest of vintage clothes.
The next Ideas for Breakfast event at the WHotel, Talking Trend with The Bijoux Editrix, will take place October 14th.