PROSTRATION 3-in-1 transformer coat:
When I look at this collection, the first word that comes to my mind is: “Duality”. Tell me about the dualistic nature of your designs.
Our pieces are very transformable, providing wearers with diverse options for a radical switch of the look. A strict minimal outfit worn to the office can be instantly modified into an awe-inspiring complex silhouette for a party. DZHUS clothing is extremely adaptive to spontaneous changes of mood and circumstances, which makes the nature of the garment truly versatile, yet its identity remains adamantly strong.
I found it rather interesting, when you state that, “the DZHUS woman is an independent intellectual in search of the perfect shell for her unique inner world...”; What particular pieces from this showcase, do you think fits that mantra, the most?
"I create for people who treat clothing as a material embodiment of their distinctive personality. The mission of this shell is not to hide them from the surrounding ambient, but to help them enter it as the truth and advanced version of themselves."
PROSTRATION 3-in-1 transformer coat :
ISOLATION 2-in-1 transformer top:
IMMERSION 2-in-1 transformer top + CONTROVERSY 4-in-1 transformer skirt:
I’m very intrigued, by the construction of the “PROSTRATION 3-in-1 transformer coat”. Please tell me a little bit more about that particular piece.
It is a complex cut; a coat made of very dense wool and lined with cotton. Using metal zippers and press studs, the architectonic multi-segment hood can be modified to a compact capote or a collar. The peculiar structure of the hood derives from the idea to extend the front, back and sleeve panels, so they become rectangular modules, from which, eventually a hood is formed. As the bust and back details are divided with tucks, there are folds between hood details, which can be open, by unzipping, to make the hood round and voluminous, or zipped together for an angular shape. It’s, actually, amazing that such a variable hood can be constructed using only the details of front and back. That playful and inventive nature is the core of DZHUS design.
Which three of your designs currently, do you think fully embodies the work of your signature industrial esthetic?
The DISINTEGRATION jacket:
The PROGRESS 2-in-1 transformer coat:
The ESCALATION 3-in-1 transformer jacket:
ITEM really relates to other brands that are socially aware, especially when it comes to using non-animal based/cruelty-free mediums; are there any particular alternative that you enjoy using, either here or in your previous creations?
My highest priority as an individual and a creator is ethical consumption and production. I’m convinced that no product, be it a masterpiece or an essential, is worth a living creature’s suffering.
At DZHUS we don’t specialize in footwear or fur-looking pieces, hence our cruelty-free sourcing isn’t that notable. The fact that we just never use non-ethical materials sounds insignificant, but if you only knew how many times I found non-mentioned leather details (labels do count!) on clothing I ordered online. Vegetarians will definitely appreciate a statement about DZHUS products’ cruelty-free origin in the description, as this will save their time and ensure them a purchase from us will meet their ideology. It’s also important to stress our vegetarian-friendly approach, because some materials we use, such as neoprene, rubberized denim or even crushed satin-touch cotton, are quite leather-looking in photos. There’s a risk otherwise, that people who discover our work on the web will conclude DZHUS propagates use of leather; whereas, it’s the last thing we would encourage people to do.
Tell me about the prominently used textile for this collection and why you chose it?
For the Autumn/Winter line, I vastly used crumpled cottons, rough denims, dense and felted coat fabrics. For me, texture matters a lot because it transmits the essence of a garment. The textiles I choose mesmerize with their imperfect look. They fully embody DZHUS’ technical vibe and keep our designs’ shape perfectly.
I know it’s hard to choose, but if you had to pick out one garment from your Escapism collection, one that is truly you from the inside out and outside in, which one piece do you think it would it be? And why?
DIFFUSION 3-in-1 transformer coat:
DIFFUSION 3-in-1 transformer coat is, indeed, a signature DZHUS piece. This voluminous coat, made of dense wool, features geometric origami-like construction. Using metal zippers, the sleeves unzip on the sides and the shoulders, and then fasten on the front and the back; making a 2-layered sleeveless jacket or a cape. This garment is very architectural, yet minimalistic; offering diverse options to wear.
What do the reoccurring cocoon styles stand to represent at DZHUS?
"Our clothing serves as a mediator, for a fragile unique individuality in an adaptation to the surrounding conformism."
Tell me about your creative process. How do you channel your work?
The process never stops, as I don’t have days-off from creativity. I generate new concepts and develop them every spare moment. My work cycles are associated with fashion seasons, thus, twice a year, I have a pattern-making period, where I dedicate most of my time to making constructions for the next collection.
Once finished, those are forwarded to our production team, who will then manufacture samples of the garments. My role as a creative director doesn’t stop with this, as I’m the person who comes up with ideas for all DZHUS’ showcases, shootings, and graphic design. It’s quite complicated to curate all creative processes for the brand, however, this strategy results in unity and authenticity of DZHUS imagery.
Was there a personal or emotional moment that you encountered, while making these particular creations?
For me, the paradox of doing independent design – within the concerns of the commercial industry – has become a deeply personal experience. This feeling is embodied in the “Escapism” concept, with abstract geometric shapes and ascetic monochrome, as well as structurally complex cuts and multipurpose transformations. For this collection, I have vastly used textiles with creasy finishes, technical textures, and raw edges; details looking, as if they were incomplete or distressed and open constructive elements. Such technological symbolism is missioned to make a statement about the pricelessness of the creative process, and pays honor to the survival mechanism of the avant-garde essence existing in the fashion business realm.
DISPERSION shirt and CONJUNCTION trousers:
Your brand looks to honor what it means, to be Avant-garde at the core: Is there anybody in particular (from within the mainstream) that you would love to see wearing your garments at a red carpet or fashion focused event?
Thinking of a global scale icon, I would be delighted to see Tilda Swinton wear DZHUS one day.
What do you think is the most rewarding factor for you as the lead designer, and for the women, in which your brand creates wearable art for?
For me, it’s truly rewarding when a client chooses DZHUS garments, not only because of their stylish look and quality, but also because she understands and values the innovations we contribute to fashion, and feels spiritual synergy with our clothing. I want to believe that for these extraordinary personalities wearing DZHUS is quite a special experience.
"Fashion has always been an effective and powerful tool of self-expression, psychological compensation, and social statements. The main difference between mainstream and avant-garde fashion, is that popular luxury and mass-market brands’ customers self-express through trends and labels, whereas for conceptual brands’ clientele, design and ideas behind it are the factors that matter when they find a reflection of their personality in garments."
Will you elaborate on the spiritual synergy between fashion and an individual, when someone wears DZHUS? What about when you wear your work?
Fashion has always been an effective and powerful tool of self-expression, psychological compensation, and social statements. The main difference between mainstream and avant-garde fashion, is that popular luxury and mass-market brands’ customers self-express through trends and labels, whereas for conceptual brands’ clientele, design and ideas behind it are the factors that matter when they find a reflection of their personality in garments. Our customers are very special people, with a one-of-a-kind inner universe. They’ve learnt their own personality very well and it’s very important for them to find clothing that will implement their vision and transmit it to others. When I wear my creations, I’m much more me than without them. It won’t be an exaggeration to say DZHUS pieces replace introduction when you meet people.
UXTAPOSITION 3-in-1 transformer culottes:
Where do you think you personally grew from Escapism opposed to your previous work?
As my requirements to my own work grow, I constantly develop my skills to work to that raised standard. From season to season, I do my best to reach a higher level of cut, techniques, fabrics and communication. Naturally, my personal approach evolves too. Now I care much more about our customers’ comfort and satisfaction than my personal ambition to stand out, as it used to be back in 2010 when I’d just started my brand.
In my opinion, I think your designs are very fashion forward, even ahead of their time. When a new person sees your work, what is the one feeling you want them to feel most?
When a like-minded soul discovers our work, it’s delightful when they feel harmony and appreciation, and if a person with a different taste comes across DZHUS products, I’m very pleased when she or he admits our creativity and high quality, even though it doesn’t fit in their own wardrobe.
Is there anything that you would like to share or elaborate on, with the iTEM readers, that may also help to further inspire them?
One important thing I want to say about my designs, is that there’s much less hidden sense behind them than spectators tend to imagine – and much more design as such – than most people can perceive. Naturally, I prefer developing concepts to explaining them.
READ OUR EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW BETWEEN THE EDITOR AND HANNAH JANE KILE BELOW, AND VISIT HER OFFICIAL SITE HERE.
RISING NYFW FALL/WINTER 18
I have been interested in clothing from a young age, starting with a streetwear obsession in middle school. That passion eventually led me into discovering luxury menswear in high school. I’ve always been creative, and decided I wanted to start making clothes, so I enrolled in a weekend fashion design class as a senior in high school. That was in 2012-2013.
I played around with the idea of starting a brand for a few years, and eventually decided I was going to go for it. I launched my first collection in January 2016. Each of my collections were designed out of some sort of emotional experience, but it is really through the process of creating the past two collections that I realized I am more of an artist than a designer.
"Fashion is such an interesting medium because it’s inherently tied to human connection."
“I love being able to discover new things as I play and let that become a part of the piece. I started playing covers mainly and began writing my own music about two years ago. I love uncovering untold stories and hearing people use their voices. I find that the most inspiring aspects to my artwork are: when people who are used to being silenced or don't usually speak, choose to tell their story or share their experiences.” said Salstrand.