NEW TYPE #34 : BEAU WATSON

November 19, 2019 6:05 PM

1. As a new designer, how do you hope to distinguish yourself among other designers?

As a new designer, I want to distinguish myself from other designers through an unexpected usage of cut and combination of textures, romantic sculptural draping, and architecture. I want to take the essence of gothic romance and infuse that with a contemporary "Rock and Roll" aesthetic that’s both inspiring and wearable. Selecting luxurious and sumptuous fabrics heightens the above aesthetic and feeling of opulence and poetry.  If you take a look at my portfolio, you will notice the combination of men’s tailoring with women’s draping. I love playing with androgyny and doing it in a way that’s not contrived or obvious. You will see women’s jumpsuits with structured shoulder pads, pockets, and coattails but ironically the feeling is very feminine yet powerful. For men, I have an extensive collection of sleeveless tanks in a plethora of different textures and fabric combinations. In my world, men wear everything from stiff leather to sleek gazar. With some of my pieces, you will see sensual seam lines contouring to the shape of the body in the most lustrous and unusual fabrics. Bias cutting is ever-present ranging from wicked, slinky dresses that fall like liquid to men’s tanks in structured or aqueous fabrics that move like the ocean. Sculpture and architecture are really vital in my line of design and I achieve that with certain construction techniques while draping artfully on the dress form. I believe every garment needs to stand on its own as works of art for many years to come as something beautiful and timeless that is carefully composed and constructed.   

2. What song/playlist prompts creativity for you?

I particularly love 60s Psychedelic Rock, 70s Glam Rock, 80s Dark Wave, and Classical Opera. Music is immensely important and inspirational when I’m designing. I’m always thinking of what song is going to play when someone wearing my clothes walks into a room. There definitely is a soundtrack to my design aesthetic and the mood I’m going for. When designing, I’m usually listening to Siouxsie and the Banshees, Iggy Pop, and the Eurthymics. From a current perspective, I’ve been listening nonstop to Boy Harsher and really have been getting into how dark and sensual their sound is. But right now, I’ve been digging “Love is a Stranger” by the Eurythmics. Annie Lennox’s voice is incredibly haunting and so cool. I feel like the girl who wears my clothes is the ultimate Femme Fatale swaying to that song. 

3. What is your favorite/least favorite trend in fashion right now?

In high fashion, I really don’t respect or value the concept of trends as I think the idea puts a shelf life on wonderful pieces crafted by artists who want longevity for their work. However, I must say I love men wearing flared pants and that seems to be popular recently. As a designer, I will always use flared pants in any collection I build. It will always serve as a staple silhouette for me because, across all body types, I don’t think any cut is as flattering on the leg as a flared pant. If I had to choose a least favorite trend, I would simply say it’s the popularity of not really caring or seeking individuality in what you choose to wear. I think people have really become complacent and way too comfortable. The world is rife with vapid or basic garments. Too many choose to not express themselves and now everyone looks the same. When thumbing through old magazines from the 60s or 70s, everyone from every culture, class, and background had style. What happened?

4. What is your sun sign (zodiac sign) and how do you think it represents you as a designer and how you work?

My sun sign is Gemini and I exhibit many traits associated with the sign. My whole life has been about high voltage energy and my connection with the energy and auras around me. I’m tenacious and confident and have always been motivated to keep going and to never get discouraged. However, I am not a ruthless individual. The people and things I believe in mean the most to me so being cutthroat is out of character. I feel most secure when I know I’m living my life to my fullest potential and exploring my passions.  I think both of those things are very Gemini-esque.  Not wasting time with the wrong people and having deep reserves of stamina and energy help to keep me focused and in line with what I’m doing. I’m a very active and passionate person and I design for a very fearless and confident customer. 

5. Colors often present auras; what color do you think is illustrative of your designs/work?

Color should always be a surprise. I think back to what it was like when I first watched the Wizard of Oz as a child and remembered Dorothy stepping out into the Land of Oz in a sea of brilliant color. It was so impactful and color should leave an impression like that. We live in a dark world. Color should be mesmerizing and carefully thought out and composed. In my designs, I often use color as a peek-a-boo moment or an element of surprise like when my customer turns around to show you the front or back of a garment. I use color in trims and linings so I know a little goes a long way. Different shades of blues and greens galvanize me.  If I had to pick one specific color, I would choose Midnight. I like when something looks black but then stepping into the right amount of light you see it is actually the deepest shade of blue. 

6. Who are some of your influences in the industry?

I adore so many different artists in the fashion world and for so many different reasons. I really admire the work and craftsmanship of Madame Grès for her extraordinary pleating and draping skills. Her artistry with working and sculpting around the body is so profound and entirely distinctive. I am overtly enthusiastic about Dries Van Noten and the ways he incorporates textures and prints in his garments. His vision stirup vigor and excitement in every collection he shows and he truly is such a modern artist. I particularly praise how adamant he is about developing his textiles and the devotion he has to making the most unique product. I love Japanese fashion and particularly Yohji Yamamoto. Like Madam Grès, he designs around the body but in such a different way. His perspective is so deliciously abstract and the world that he designs has such magic. It is imperative that designers have a sense of inimitable identity in their brand so anyone that truly possesses this concept is inspirational to any upcoming designer. 

7. What brand/designer do you always look forward to seeing during fashion week(s)?

As mentioned earlier, I love the designs of Dries van Noten and Yohji Yamamoto! So definitely I’m always looking forward to those two during Fashion Week but I also really have been in awe over Iris Van Herpen and her fantastical designs. Her artistry and vision transport me into a universe of enchantment. The world has never seen anything quite like her technique and it’s so refreshing to see how a designer is taking perfect advantage of modern technology to set themselves apart from everyone else. And then of course I always look forward to a Versace show. There is such prestige about what it is like to be a daring Versace woman and to own the catwalk. Their soundtrack, the energy, and the way the girls walk are always the best. You never know what you are getting with Versace so it’s always exciting. And no house is more surprising or as shockingly unanticipated as Margiela. Their couture shows have been astonishing recently with their conceptual silhouettes, invigorating textures, and exquisite usage of color and sheen. 

8. What is your favorite place to eat in New York? 

I definitely have to pick more than one. My favorite restaurants in New York are Barrio Chino, Il Cantinori, and Lovely Day. If you want the best Mexican food in the city, head over to Barrio Chino and order the spicy grapefruit margarita and their Enchiladas Verdes. Take my word as a Texan. I could literally eat there every day. Il Cantinori is the best Italian restaurant in the city and the locals have been going there weekly for almost four decades. The pastas are all homemade and the menu is seasonal.  Finally, Lovely Day is just a staple for any local in my neighborhood. It’s a comfortable sanctuary of good food and privacy that you can always rely on.

9. You just pulled up to Starbucks, what did you order?

If I’m at Starbucks, I’m always really simple. No matter the temperature outside, I always order myself a classic iced coffee. If calories don’t count and I need a treat, then I’ll order a Venti Mocha Frappuccino. Coffee is a must for me.  

10. Being from Texas and transitioning into life in New York, what’s something you will never get used to about the NY lifestyle?

Trash and Vermin.

 

WRITTEN BY TAYLOR DUMARS

INSTAGRAM: @beauwatsonnewyork

EDITED BY SHO ISHIKURA

 

 

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