Atlanta, Georgia Casting Calls – Red Band Society casting call for new talent in Atlanta, Georgia. Red Band Society is a dark dramedy that centers on the daily lives of a group of teenagers living in a hospital who become unlikely friends. The depth of the unexpected friendships allows them to survive the challenges of growing […]
Atlanta, Georgia Casting Calls – ABC Resurrection Season 2 casting call for security guards to work on a scene filming in Atlanta. Casting directors are holding a rush call looking for actors, models, and talent to play security guards on a scene filming on Wednesday, November 26. Resurrection centers on the lives of the people of […]
Los Angeles, California Casting Calls – GLEE is looking for muscular guys and homeless people to work on the final season of Fox’s ‘GLEE’ filming in Los Angeles. Casting directors are looking for muscular guys to work on a scene filming on December 8th, 17th and 18th in Los Angeles. In addition, casting directors are […]
New Orleans, Louisiana Casting Calls – Joe Dirt 2: Beautiful Loser Casting Call for bikers in Louisiana. Casting directors are looking for biker types to work on a scene filming on December 1st, December 2nd, December 5th and December 19th. Filming will take place in Covington, Georgia. To audition for a role on the Joe Dirt […]
Los Angeles, California – Los Angeles TV series casting call for actors, models, and talent to work on several TV shows in Los Angeles. Central Casting Los Angeles is looking for actors, models, and talent to work on TV shows filming in Los Angeles. Casting directors are looking for attractive, wealthy-looking men and women looking to […]
Of his new sneaker line with three-time NBA champ Dwyane Wade, Alejandro Ingelmo says, "We kept going back to the movie The Fifth Element." It's no surprise, then, that that capsule collection, produced by Chinese footwear brand Li-Ning, is entitled "The Third Element" in reference to both the film and Dwyane's jersey number. Since launching his own label in 2006, Alejandro's statement heels in the women's world have often referenced sci-fi, and his sneakers have helped push high-fashion high-tops to the forefront of menswear. In his own words, "Sneakers are now for men what heels have always been for women."
In 2012, Wade made waves when he opted to not renew his contract with Jordan Brand, and instead sign a deal with Li-Ning, a brand that isn't exactly an icon in American culture. Though it wasn't the first time an NBA athlete has signed an endorsement contract with the Chinese brand, it could be argued that thanks to creative forces like Ingelmo being brought on to re-imagine the classic basketball sneaker, it has proven fruitful for both parties.
As for their new collaboration, these are shoes for the guy who isn't afraid of breaking the monochromatic mold, and, like Wade, likely has passion for both fashion and the hardwood. Though Ingelmo admits, "As a kid, my parents didn't want me to wear sneakers," today there's no question that a pair of sneakers with some flair are a staple of any modern man's wardrobe. On December 3, the three styles will debut exclusively at Dwyane's hometown boutique, The Webster Miami, and retail for $325. A launch event will take place on Dec 2 at The Ritz Carlton Residences in Miami Beach during Art Basel. We spoke with the NBA superstar for his take on the collection and for insight into his relationship with Ingelmo and Li-Ning.
How did your relationship start with Alejandro?
When [Li-Ning and] I started to think about an off court shoe, we looked around at different designers to see who could help me achieve what I wanted for the sneaker, and Alejandro was the guy. He's really helped us build our relationship with China, and now I'm excited that we are able to bring some product to the States.
What was your vision for the collaboration?
First and foremost I wanted a sneaker that performed well on the court, but also was able to transfer away from the game into everyday life. So when it came to colorways, design, etc., I wanted to focus on things that could be in both worlds. Obviously I love fashion, and obviously I love sports, so I wanted to bring those two together. Aesthetically, I wanted to make something classic and memorable for Li-Ning.
What inspired the design? Are there any specific reference points?
The biggest thing that I kept coming back to with Alejandro is that it has to be clean and classic. And I'm not talking about color, I'm talking about design. So when you take away the color, there really isn't a whole lot going on with the shape because we knew we wanted to add a lot more with the colors and patterns.
What are the advantages of working with Li-Ning versus some of the major sneaker brands that work with most athletes in the league?
Well I have worked with Converse and Jordan in the past, but I think with Li-Ning the biggest difference is my role. I am a lot more involved with everything now, even when it comes to developing the brand, which is obviously a lot different than working with those other brands. But I learned from the way Converse and Jordan operate, and applied that knowledge to Li-Ning.
How did your personal taste and style influence the sneaker design?
I always call my style unpredictable. Whatever I'm designing, whether it's socks, shoes, whatever, I always try to be unpredictable, too. Life is unpredictable, so why not have your style be that way, too?
How has your style changed since you first came into the league? Is there anything that when you look back, you regret wearing?
Well, if you break it down into "the dos and the don'ts" I think I've definitely had some don'ts over the years. But do I regret wearing anything? Not really, because it was what I was into at the time. The biggest thing for me in terms of my style changing has just been being more open-minded than I used to be, and being confident in whatever I wear. I want to set trends, and be the first to wear certain things.
Neil Barrett, who first caught our attention by spinning staid suits into streamlined uniforms for a new generation of stylish guys, understands that these days, high-end designer brands are being sought out for their easy-to-spot designs as much as for their quality construction. That's why Barrett has shifted his runway presentations in recent years to focus on the pumped-up sportswear side of his label, showing off his Hulked-out neoprene sweatshirts, minimalist outerwear, and expertly cut trousers.
It's that same thinking gave birth to Barrett's ombré pieces from his fall collection, twists on seasonal standards like topcoats and flannel jackets. The hard-to-ignore degradé items also found a fan in Mr Porter, who teamed up with the designer for a six-piece capsule collection launching today. We caught up with the Milan-based Brit to talk designing in the digital age, why guys should be paying as much attention to fabric as they do fit, and what he thinks when he sees Wiz Khalifa in his threads.
You were part of the small group of designers that reimagined the suit a decade ago. It was slimmer, shorter, and cooler than it had been in twenty years. Yet for the past few seasons, you've been moving away from that on the runway. Why? From my first collections fifteen-and-a-half years ago, I always sort of pushed that suit situation and before that, when I was working at other companies, I was always pushing a modern suit. In 2012 I decided to move away in the way I present my collections--become more graphic and less sartorial, do something that was more visual and easier to attract attention. Particularly online, to do something somebody could actually be attracted by in his computer screen.
Your clothes are cut so precisely and with details that ensure a perfect fit. In this digital age are you worried that that doesn't always read on a computer screen? I don't think they read online. Everything that is the basis of my design ethos, my attention to detail and fit, you can't get it in a picture.
Has that affected your design your design process? Totally.
Would you say that's one of the biggest changes you've seen in the industry in recent years? It's the biggest thing I've had to readdress. What I do and my attention to detail, and fit, and fabric is something that the person trying on my garments will understand. People who own my garments, people whom I've already convinced understand what Neil Barrett is about.
Well, you have a very loyal army. We live for them. I try and recreate interest and desire for them season in and season out. But for the whole digital era that we're living in, I decided that it was important to make things easier and recognizable from a distance, which has been very successful.
Your lightning-bolt graphic has exploded. It's become such an identifiable signature of yours in such a short span of time. Where did the image come from? It was purely trying to think of something that was very strong, very masculine, and at the same time, that I could minimalize its decorative value. It's a simple icon and, I don't know, things just fall into place in a very organic way when I design. It's either right or it's wrong. If it takes me more than a minute to think about it, it's wrong.
As you've moved away from your sartorial clothing in your presentations, have you found that your customer is coming to you for your new sportswear element from across the board? I think I continue to have that existing client who always finds what I'm developing. I'm just expanding the brand by adding these more graphic options. So across the board you can buy a jacket, leather jacket, you know, knitwear, thick, thin, sweatshirts, pants, T-shirts, everything. I keep applying that graphic everywhere, but in a way that I would wear it.
You do so many interesting things with fabrications, working technical elements into traditional silhouette. You're right in the middle of menswear's current obsession with all things neoprene or scuba... I've been doing that now for sixteen years. My first ever collection for Prada was neoprene-based. I've been pushing this since day one. My first collection was flannel and leather bonded to neoprene, simple combie coats and harringtons. That was fifteen-and-a-half years ago, but I've been doing it ever since. Every season that's the thing that I put in the collection.
Can you recall why you wanted to include that in the first collection? It was a comfort situation and a crease problem. I hate creases unless I really want to be totally fucked up and...intentionally creased. But I think you should do everything in life knowing how to be in control.
How much does fabric choice influence your design? Every season I try to imagine my fabric, the color of the fabric, the tone of the fabric, the feel of the fabric, before I design. I try to imagine what do I want now. So, talking about Mr Porter stuff here, I wanted to have a degradé, but I wanted to have a degradé that was super subtle and flat. It's very giving--everything has to be stretch. I really believe in comfort and clothing molding to your body shape because we all have different body shapes. We also change, so you need that stretch to give yourself a little bit of comfort and to mold to your body.
Men are always looking for that; the ideal is to be both comfortable and dressed up. I think that's the only way to design. I don't know any man who doesn't want to be like that and I do not design in another way. That is the only way to design.
Without giving away any secrets, are there fabrications or techniques you've been trying to work out, or anything you've tried in the past you tried that just didn't work out? I'm always trying to improve on everything. I feel like you can never sit on your laurels and accept that this is the best. There are some things that I feel I can't do better, but there are products that I could do better, so I focus on those. I have a huge wardrobe, but I still wake up and feel like I don't have a specific tone of garment with the right fit. So I'm always creating new stuff. That's why I love my job.
It's also a very compelling narrative for a guy to buy into, that a trusted designer wants to wear a piece himself. Everything I do is a reality test. If I'm not interested by it, I can find a fault in everything. I was in Hong Kong a couple of weeks ago and one night I went shopping. I tried about twenty-five garments but at the end I only managed to buy three pieces because nothing quite fit properly. It looked nice on the hanger, but it didn't do anything for my body. And I'm like, "that's wrong, wrong, wrong," and they were some amazing designers.
You bring up a good point. I think when a lot of guys are looking at fashion with a capital F, it looks cool on a hanger or it's a beautifully intricate piece, but in everyday life it has no... ..relevance. No relevance to spend that much money for a garment that doesn't really make you look that much better. The whole point of clothes is to make you feel psychologically more confident. Because you feel you look good and you go out smiling in the morning and you get compliments maybe.
You've dressed everyone from Brad Pitt to Justin Timberlake on his most recent tour, and more rappers in the last year than we can count. Who has been the celebrity you've been most surprised to see wearing your clothes? I was most surprised to see Wiz Khalifa, I must say. The way he wore the stuff was kind of funny and he works it. I'm happy with anybody who wears the clothes. I have respect for the artist.
What do you think guys like Wiz Khalifa are responding to most about your clothes? Visibility. The visibility factor is really working. You know, whether it's the modernist sweaters that are a little bit more curvy, the ergonomic ones I did in the summer, lightning now, and then next summer my Roman camouflage situation is going to do very well.
Do you remember the first celebrity you spotted wearing your clothes? The first celebrity was Brad, because when I left Prada I had a close relationship with his agent and with him at that time. He was wearing my clothes for almost five years. He was wearing my first ever distressed leather jacket. He owns the first ever sample I ever managed to create. That was a problem for production. I had to borrow it and then give it back to him.
Barrett's six piece capsule collection is on sale now at mrporter.com