For INSIDE X BANK we ask one our Dutch designers
five questions about their opinion and their work.
This edition features the duo Schueller de Waal.
The duo behind the fashion label Schueller de Waal, Philipp Schueller and Rens
de Waal, think fashion is therapy. With their capsule collections, they create fashion statements and disregard the traditional idea of a full wardrobe collection.
Their last collected showed during the last days of Paris Fashion Week, where the
duo offered fashion victims the opportunity for some fashion therapy. Model Iekeliene Stange acted as the fashion therapist, guiding the audience through “the Gateway to Fashion.”
We caught up with Schueller and de Waal to hear about their current “rebooting” phase and what it means for their future.
What does it mean for you as designers to have your pieces at X BANK?
Apart from feeling honoured to be part of X BANK‘s selection of Dutch designers, we love having such direct contact with the lovely X BANK team with our studio being located so close to the store. Because of this, we can get much more detailed information about how our work is perceived by the public.
How do you define Dutch art, fashion and design?
Progressive and functional conceptualism.
Who is your favourite X BANK designer and why (besides yourselves, of course)?
Noman Studio for their interdisciplinary approach to design. Hacked By for their
vision and signature.
Can you tell us more about your motto “Serious fashion…not so serious”?
We think the fashion industry is a weird phenomenon that’s taken too seriously in many respects and doesn’t take itself seriously enough in regards to the societal and environmental issues it causes. These issues should get much more attention. Our design studio aims to produce light-hearted fashion and art direction that functions
as a carrier for change.
You won the Dutch Design Award last June, and now you are “rebooting.” What does this mean and does it have a connection with winning the award?
We won the Dutch Design Award for our show Compulsory Shenanigans, in which we embraced the imperfections that belong to being a small independent label and design studio. We found all sorts of improvised solutions to measure up to the enormous presentations of the big fashion houses. By using all the clichés belonging to these out-of-proportion shows, our tongue-in-cheek attitude toward the oversaturated fashion business reached an all-time high.
This fashion show marked the peak of us mocking traditional forms of making and
presenting fashion. For us it was clear from the beginning that after this show we would need to retreat from what we do for a while and critically reflect on what our vision would become. We did not hide this period of rebooting—we translated it into our social media wipe-out, where we literally made all our posts disappear, rather than posting new imagery.
We have launched our rebooted vision at Palais de Tokyo during Paris Fashion Week with our latest project The Gateway to Fashion. From now on, our label and design studio will create fashion statements and capsule collections which express our belief in fashion as therapy. SDW refers to both our initials and the studio’s vision: seeking design wellbeing. With our work and collaborations, we aspire to develop different perspectives on fashion that allow for a refreshed optimism, with the ultimate goal of catalysing change.
We see “intuition” and “experiment” as the power force of fashion. Within our work, we are looking to discover relevant ways of expressing this intrinsic fascination in a time where fashion needs to be re-envisioned. A critical attitude is needed to think outside the system's boundaries to find a way to create newness in whatever form or shape, infused with an effortless, humorous approach.