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Fashion & Trends, People

COS Strives to Shed the Fast Fashion Veneer

By Sofia Celeste 12 July 2018

MILAN, ITALY - A lot of eyebrows were raised when Pitti Immagine announced the London-based COS presence on the roster of Pitti Immagine Uomo 94, as many of the long-time brands that show here are rooted in slow fashion and Italian craftsmanship. Cos’ "Soma" show last June marked the first time a fast fashion brand has showcased at Pitti Immagine Uomo. A lot of that was due to the brand's quest to establish itself with more of a soul.

Owned by Swedish juggernaut H&M, the brand's management unfurled a show at Florence’s Renaissance-era Ospedale degli Innocenti where their mens wear capsule was unfurled in a choreographed display, curated by famed British choreographer Wayne McGregor.

Fairplay caught up with Christophe Copin, COS'Head of Menswear:

We’re all very curious as to why you decided Pitti was a great venue to show this collection…

Pitti was the proper place, because historically it’s the biggest menswear event ever in the year. You’ve got traditional tailoring and also very experimental.

This collection is about the essential. We didn’t want to stage a fashion show because it was not about that. It was about the movement. There’s something very connected to the functionality of the fabric. We always work with other artists and this time it was about the movement that we do every day without even thinking about it. That’s why we decided on "SOMA" because it’s body without mind. You make some sort of movement about 200 times a day without even thinking about it. And it was amazing to show it in a real city, a beautiful city, away from the stage and not in a fashion show – very real life.

The curious thing is... Pitti is for buyers and with an event like this, they’re just coming to see COS out of curiosity. So, what was the marketing reasoning behind this event?

The idea was to show the way we are working all the time on the collection; the creative process of it. It was very special this time because from the beginning we wanted to work on the essentials. We always work on the essential, but the thing is to find a new way to make the essential more modern, more timeless, more functional every season. This time it was no different, because we collaborate with artists always – English designers, English artists. But this time it was really connected to the fabric – the garment, the music.

There are a lot of brands out there, but COS really is able to distinguish itself in terms of style and also in terms of sustainability with the C-label for example. How have you perfected that over the years?

The DNA is of course there from the beginning and the creative process is different. I mean it’s not different from the other fashion houses but each season we start from scratch, thinking about what artists we like, what feelings and performances we like. We gather everyone and think about what is interesting. And afterward everything really goes with the COS aesthetic, which as you say, is very particular. There’s nothing forced, it’s all very connected from the beginning – the function, the tactility of the fabric and the timelessness of it. But we try to make it unexpected each time.

 

 

 

Sofia Celeste
FAIRPLAY Editor-in-Chief

When she is not hunting down the latest in tech and fashion, Sofia Celeste is scouting artisan talent for her online magazine bacoluxury.com. Born in the US and raised on the Pacific Island of Guam, she went on to write for Dow Jones Newswires and the Wall Street Journal. Her work is now regularly published in top fashion publications NOWFASHION and WWD.

MILAN, ITALY - A lot of eyebrows were raised when Pitti Immagine announced the London-based COS presence on the roster of Pitti Immagine Uomo 94, as many of the long-time brands that show here are rooted in slow fashion and Italian craftsmanship. Cos’ "Soma" show last June marked the first time a fast fashion brand has showcased at Pitti Immagine Uomo. A lot of that was due to the brand's quest to establish itself with more of a soul.

Owned by Swedish juggernaut H&M, the brand's management unfurled a show at Florence’s Renaissance-era Ospedale degli Innocenti where their mens wear capsule was unfurled in a choreographed display, curated by famed British choreographer Wayne McGregor.

Fairplay caught up with Christophe Copin, COS'Head of Menswear:

We’re all very curious as to why you decided Pitti was a great venue to show this collection…

Pitti was the proper place, because historically it’s the biggest menswear event ever in the year. You’ve got traditional tailoring and also very experimental.

This collection is about the essential. We didn’t want to stage a fashion show because it was not about that. It was about the movement. There’s something very connected to the functionality of the fabric. We always work with other artists and this time it was about the movement that we do every day without even thinking about it. That’s why we decided on "SOMA" because it’s body without mind. You make some sort of movement about 200 times a day without even thinking about it. And it was amazing to show it in a real city, a beautiful city, away from the stage and not in a fashion show – very real life.

The curious thing is... Pitti is for buyers and with an event like this, they’re just coming to see COS out of curiosity. So, what was the marketing reasoning behind this event?

The idea was to show the way we are working all the time on the collection; the creative process of it. It was very special this time because from the beginning we wanted to work on the essentials. We always work on the essential, but the thing is to find a new way to make the essential more modern, more timeless, more functional every season. This time it was no different, because we collaborate with artists always – English designers, English artists. But this time it was really connected to the fabric – the garment, the music.

There are a lot of brands out there, but COS really is able to distinguish itself in terms of style and also in terms of sustainability with the C-label for example. How have you perfected that over the years?

The DNA is of course there from the beginning and the creative process is different. I mean it’s not different from the other fashion houses but each season we start from scratch, thinking about what artists we like, what feelings and performances we like. We gather everyone and think about what is interesting. And afterward everything really goes with the COS aesthetic, which as you say, is very particular. There’s nothing forced, it’s all very connected from the beginning – the function, the tactility of the fabric and the timelessness of it. But we try to make it unexpected each time.

 

 

 

Sofia Celeste
FAIRPLAY Editor-in-Chief

When she is not hunting down the latest in tech and fashion, Sofia Celeste is scouting artisan talent for her online magazine bacoluxury.com. Born in the US and raised on the Pacific Island of Guam, she went on to write for Dow Jones Newswires and the Wall Street Journal. Her work is now regularly published in top fashion publications NOWFASHION and WWD.

 

Photo: VOGUE

 

Photo: VOGUE

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