Joseph Ettedgui was renowned for his unique aesthetic that was both clean and sophisticated when he launched his first collection in 1983.
Today, under the vision of co-creative directors Anna Lundbäck Dyhr and Frederik Dyhr, the London-based brand continues the founder’s original vision of balancing an edgy point of view with timeless appeal, breathing new life into fashion must-haves. the luxurious wardrobe with its modern and minimalist hallmark. approach.
What does the first 30 minutes of your day look like, your morning routine?
DF: I’m up and straight in the shower, then coffee and breakfast with the kids.
AL: Coffee, always coffee first!
What is at the heart of Joseph, the DNA of the brand?
AL: Joseph’s DNA is rooted in our complementary contrasts – i.e. black vs white, London cool vs Parisian chic, masculine vs feminine – we strive to balance timeless design with contemporary aesthetics.
DF: It was important to us to stay true to Joseph Ettedgui’s original vision for the brand – to create a curated timeless wardrobe of luxury essentials, and this remains our starting point each season for the collections.
The brand is known for its classic pieces that transcend the seasons. What key elements continue to drive sales season after season?
AL: The Foundations collection contains some of our bestsellers; they are designed with longevity in mind. These are the building blocks of a timeless wardrobe, simple pieces – the classic wrap coat, a fine cashmere knit, tailored trousers in wool or stretch gabardine, a white cotton shirt – all capable of blending seamlessly into an existing wardrobe.
How do the business and creative aspects of the business work together and do you feel particularly drawn to one side of the business?
DF: Commercial and creative must work hand in hand, one does not go without the other. We work closely with all business functions within the company who help inform the design process and ensure collections resonate with the customer. The customer is at the center of everything we do.
What has been the biggest challenge so far and how have you overcome it?
DF: Learning to work together as well as to live together was a new challenge, which I think we took up wholeheartedly. We work side by side in a very organic way, we each have different areas of expertise so very naturally one will lead and the other will support depending on the subject. It’s a matter of patience, communication and trust that everything will be fine in the end.
Have you had any mentors along the way and if so, what was the best advice they gave you?
AL: In my diverse career, I am grateful to have worked at different levels of the market. Each experience has made me the designer I am today.
My very first experience in fashion was with Tomas Maier at Bottega Veneta. Tomas took me under his wing, showed me the tricks of the trade, it was an invaluable experience and above all taught me to love and appreciate quality and know-how.
DF: I wouldn’t say I’ve had “mentors” as such, but I’ve been very lucky to work in companies with great inspirational leaders such as Christopher Bailey and Angela Ahrends at Burberry and the man himself, Tommy Hilfiger
Last year was a period that saw brands change their strategy. Have you had to pivot as a business?
DF: The pandemic has pushed us to see things differently, the Joseph style remains, but we thought more about the casual side of the brand.
We are known for our knits, so we looked at how we could develop knits across the collections, not just through sweaters, but also pants, outerwear and in the summer collections through shorts and dresses. We thought about how we could keep the look polished and elevated yet comfortable, to meet changing customer needs.
AL: It’s a balance – crisis or not – to provide clothes that women will want to wear no matter what. Overall, our daily life has changed, and we wanted to focus on the future, remaining optimistic that despite everything, the Joseph woman would continue to want to look and feel good.
What effect do you think social media has on brand growth?
AL: Social media is a fantastic tool for us to communicate our vision of the Joseph brand, sharing inspirations, projects and collections directly with the global Joseph consumer. We hope they, in turn, will share with their followers and networks to connect us with a new audience. It is a great tool to increase brand awareness.
This is the question of integrity – what does integrity mean to you?
AL: Integrity for us is being kind, treating others with respect, doing the right thing, even if it’s not always easy.
DF: We also look at integrity from a sustainability perspective. In recent years it has become a priority for us, so we are constantly challenging ourselves and the company to be better and do better. For the past year, we have been working on an initiative called the Waste Project, where we use scrap fabrics and yarns, otherwise destined for landfills. Our newest venture within the Waste Project is a collaboration with social enterprise – Love Welcomes. With them, we created a capsule of accessories using surplus silk and all the pieces are handmade by refugee women. It’s a real labor of love, the crochet silk tote alone takes over 28 hours to make and uses 22 yards of silk.
April – ‘The Question of Integrity’ – Download now
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