Within the system: Belgian designer Raf Simons told about today's fashion problems

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It is unlikely that anyone would argue that 2020 has become rich in events that have influenced the usual way of life in many areas, including the fashion industry. Over the past few months, many designers have already shared their predictions about what the future holds for fashion, and what changes need to be resorted to so that the industry does not die under the yoke of the global pandemic consequences. On the eve of his eponymous brand's 25th anniversary and the presentation of his first collection for Prada, the king of minimalism Raf Simons gave an interview for The Cut magazine, in which he explained why modern fashion is a system, and how it is possible to get out of it.



The Belgian designer seems to does not hide his fatigue from the frantic rhythm in which all modern brands are forced to live and work. Simons admits that he would be happy to slow down or even take a time out. "Everything we do right now is following a timeline that is ridiculous, and very often it's not about what you want to say," he said. "I would be fine to not show something for two years, maybe. No problemo."

According to Simons, designers become part of a production system that hinders free creation. "…in fashion, we work with design teams and other commercial teams, like marketing. You're involved in this thing, it's just ongoing, and yet you know the way it's going is not exactly the way you like it. But you do it. I don't know what it is, but something just sucks you into this systematic kind of behavior," the designer explained.



But at the same time, it seems like Simons is going to use the pandemic outcomes to change this system. He is planning to work with the Raf Simons archives pieces to create a new spring-summer 2021 collection. "All of us, because we're in this system, do way too much, and now we are obliged to do less for economical reasons," he said. "In a way, it's fantastic."



Talking about the quarantine, the designer expressed his doubts about the spread of the idea of conscious consumption caused by the lockdown.  "There are all these things people think they need, but do they really need them?" He wondered. "I'm not sure I'm the best person to talk about this, but honestly, I haven't worn a piece of fashion in months."



However, Raf Simons does not think that today's fashion should become easier and more comfortable. "What I think a lot about — it's constantly on my mind — is to make things that people will keep for a long time," he shared his idea.  "That's true of my own brand. It's not because you bring a good story or a narrative that a collection is going to be long-lasting."


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