Eight years ago Jil Sander left her successful fashion brand and watched from the sidelines as other designers steered it. Now she’s back, to finish what she started. The queen of minimalism chats with Elle UK on her return to Jil Sander, her thoughts on Raf Simons’ time at the label, her techniques to ageing gracefully and her joy of minimal style.
Below are some interview highlights. You can read the whole interview in the Elle UK March 2013 issue which is on sale tomorrow.
On what she did after she left Jil Sander: “I did many things. I travelled a lot, to places in Russia, Iran, Africa and the Near East, which I had always longed to see, but never found the leisure time to go. I read a lot and dedicated more time to my garden, but I also kept in touch with the arts and my professional work. It took some time to decide on the right move among the offers that came in quite regularly.”
On whether Raf Simons was a good fit to take over her role at Jil Sander when she left: “Yes, since he had great respect for the heritage of the brand.”
On how fashion has changed in her decade long absence: “The past decade was a time of disorientation. Stylistically, fashion moved more backwards than forwards. Economically though, things changed a lot. Globalisation triggered the huge accessories market.”
On why minimalism is seeing resurgence in fashion: “In a serious economic situation like this, people opt for understatement. They don’t feel like disguising and ‘dressing up.”
On whether she has any failsafe clothing in her wardrobe: “I only have failsafe clothing in my wardrobe. Except maybe high heels, which I wear for official evening invitations.”
On the three items she couldn’t live without: “A white shirt, dark jeans and a tailored navy coat.”
On her ethos on ageing: “To live simply, follow your dreams and never forget that anything can happen around the next corner. But the most important thing for me is to stay creative.”
Credit: ELLE UK