Diesel have been making efforts in recent years to reinvigorate their brand somewhat, and it was a great experience to be involved in the creation of their mammoth new brand book, from which all future communications will take their lead. Put together by a team that spanned both the UK and Italy, it was not always an easy marriage of ideas and language – I was happy to be there though to offer advice, editing and sub-editing, and think the finished article will offer a whole new clarity to the brand for Renzo, Nicola and their team.
A roundup of recent profiles written for semaine. The space for this type of content on this type of website is so crowded nowadays – always in my work for Semaine, I try to cover slightly more unexpected or in-depth ground. i don’t believe that ‘aspirational’ or ‘lifestyle-focused’ or whatever has to mean the same as completely ‘dumbing down’ – thankfully Michelle and Georgie at Semaine seem to recognise this too.
I visited Hostem’s temporary new home on Old Nichol street for the first time recently – as beautifully considered as anything else that James, Christie and the rest of the team have turned their hand to.
The change of scenery is the result of some major new refurbishments going on at their redchurch street citadel round the corner – brought about by both their ever-changing surroundings and a recalibration of what they want to say with the space.
It inevitably reminded me of their first major upheaval, when they first introduced womenswear. I was lucky enough to be involved in those early stages and to see their vision come to life: that exquisite curation of products set against a perfectly realised backdrop of natural light, steel parquet flooring and endless winding staircases…
I’ve no doubt that whatever direction they take things in this time round, it will be equally impressive.
I’ve been privileged enough to have spent the last month or so working on the launch of floom – an exciting new digital startup that puts the finest artisanal, local florists at your fingertips.
One particularly rewarding brief was to prepare the tone of voice document for the brand, which will act as a foundation for all their communications as they grow.
The ambitious project is the result of a uniquely put together team of creatives, business minds and tech-visionaries able to draw on extensive experience in the upper echelons of the luxury and fashion industry. At the heart of floom is its Paris-born and Bali-raised founder, Lana Elie. In previous roles Elie was responsible for delivering high quality content and campaigns for fashion companies that read like a who’s who of cool, covetable brands: burberry, prada, gucci, marc jacobs, nike and i-D to name just a few…
Floom launches at the end of february – visit the site here and sign up to the newsletter for more info…
A hard drive clearout unearthed a piece i wrote about everyone’s favourite weirdo popstar super-creep, drake. assembled in the midnight hours shortly after If You’re Reading This… was released, it kind of got away from me a bit and never quite made it as far as its intended publisher…
‘I need some company, I need some company, I need to take my mind off being me in my prime’: Drizzy Drake and the bewildering twilight of his millennial generation…
It’s Halloween of 2011 and I’m at some party. I’m in my final year of university, and had to be dragged there – my preferred way to spend the evening around that time was to freak out about not applying for internships, whilst streaming American sitcoms and not applying for internships. It’s late when I get to the party. I know maybe one friend there, who spends the evening preoccupied with her on-off boyfriend. I’m just about the only one not in costume. Somehow ‘late’ becomes 3am and I’m stumbling; the room is swaying and a rapper, half Jewish-Canadian, half African-American is intoning relentless mixed metaphors and half-realised insights into his relationships with women; with the world in general. It’s 3am and everyone is stumbling, enraptured with fists in the air: chanting along to the first ‘proper’ album by Drake. “I’m Doing Me, I’m Doing Me right now,” and it’s all fed through two or three layers of vocals and vocoder effects and gold-tipped wires and machines made in Japan in a studio in Toronto; West Hollywood; Jamaica. Finally here, recreated on cheap components in a rented house that shakes with every badly over-exposed bass note, sending everybody crazy with that weird, prescient mantra. I’m Doing Me, I’m Doing Me right now…
My dear friend George recently had his Discarded Sleeping Stations photo series published by hostem, who i worked with when they were launching womenswear for the first time a couple of years ago.
It’s difficult to describe how happy it makes me feel when i think about this, without trying to sum up ten years of always fluctuating but always heartfelt friendship. George is one of the truest creative spirits i’ve ever met: relentlessly busy with his art, music and whatever else he turns his hand to. I feel honoured to have played a small part in the project, helping George to articulate the influences and ideas that went into its creation for the foreward.
If it’s not sold out of its limited run yet then i sincerely urge you to head to Hostem – it’s as beautifully put together as everything else in the place.
You can read more about discarded sleeping stations over at hungertv.
I found this mix the other day that i must have made a year or so ago on my slightly beat up pair of 1210s. It’s broadly ambient and abstract and a little bit noisy in places but occasionally actual songs bubble to the surface and I still like it, which rarely applies to anything i do after similar amounts of time have passed.
I make these sort of things to justify the amount i spend on records and to keep me sane on commutes.
waters above the firmament – clay rendering (hospital productions, 2014)
donato dozzy – terzo giorno (stroboscopic artefacts, 2014)
alone on the beach (beach mix) – ron morelli (hospital productions, 2014)
i walked home beholding – mount eerie (p.w. elverum & sun, ltd., 2012)
yonder – cave slave (LN-CC recordings, 2012)
the mirror reflecting pt. 2 – the haxan cloak (tri angle, 2013)
eight methods – killing sound (blackest ever black, 2014)
a change of attitude – dalhous (blackest ever black, 2014)
less – nils frahm (erased tapes, 2011)
please remember – deafheaven (deathwish inc., 2013)
[can’t remember which track] – shampoo boy (blackest ever black, 2013)
sorrow – life without buildings (tugboat records, 2000)
A favourite assignment of recent times: getting to interview and profile the inspiring(/intimidating) apollonia poilâne for semaine.com. Daughter of Lionel Poilâne, she was eighteen years old when both he and her mother died in a freak helicopter accident. Three days later she announced to the entire famed Poilâne boulangerie empire that she would be taking over as CEO, effective immediately. a year later she took up a place at Harvard, where she continued to oversee the business as it grew to unprecedented levels.