Craking the menswear boundaries - Julian Zigerli

 Designer Julian Zigerli

- Describe yourself as a designer and as a person. What is the main difference between both descriptions?
- My job is my life and the other way around. I don’t have the luxury to split in two. But that is okay since my work is very personal. It goes hand in hand with who I am. But there is still a main difference. One Julian Zigerli is a real person who cares about the good things in life. The other one is still “just” work.

- Have you always wanted to create clothes? What is the most fascinating thing about menswear for you?
- Always is a very wide word. No, I didn’t always wanted to create cloth. When I was a child I wanted to become a circus artist. But luckily I discovered my love for fashion and the handicraft of creating garments and beautiful pieces.
I believe that menswear still has boarders who can be cracked. Even in these days where men definitely became more playful and fashionable than back in the days. Inspiring those guys who usually don’t care about what to slip on in the morning - I find very interesting.

- What do you think about masculinity and its stereotypes nowadays?
- I love how there are so many different facets to masculinity. Obviously there are stereotypes, which pop up in everyone’s mind. But there are also a lot of underdogs, who turn out to be very masculine for a lot of people even though the book doesn’t say so. Being masculine is not anymore just based on body structure or facial hair. There’s much more to it also from the intellectual side.

- What is the ideal portrait of your customer?
- He is going for a run in the morning before he feeds his cat at home. He eats Nutella bread with loads of butter on it. He sometimes doesn’t care about getting dressed properly but still likes a good and smart piece of clothing. He loves his couch. He is self-secure. He is single, he is married, hi is gay, he is straight. He is happy. He is you, he is me - he is everyone who loves life.
Picture by Jonas Hegi

- Share the inspirations/meanings behind the latest collection named My Daddy was a Military Pilot.
- "My Daddy Was A Military Pilot" isn't just the title of the collection. It is also the truth. My daddy really was a military pilot. He was the base for the collection.

It is homage to a shark of the sky, built out of stories, memories and feelings.
It is not about the military but the rush associated with being a jet pilot.
It is an idea of an incredible power released within you by the thought of flying with supersonic speed.

The feeling full of longing, solitude, power and dignity. Supersonic sound waves, incredible heights, supernatural speed. Life at the edge and between the elements.

- For your latest collection’s prints you have collaborated with Berlin based artist Fabian Fobbe. How did you met and what you learned while working as a duo?
- We met already years ago through a good friend of mine. He is her fiancé now. Congratulations again! We always got along very well and after that collaboration where we actually had to put our creative brains together, I realized that the reason why I always loved his work is because we really are on the same page when it comes to ideas, moods, colours and emotions. Sharing is caring, that’s the most important thing when you work with someone. 

- It seems that you always represent your clothes surrounded by nature or deeply involved in motion and movement.  Is that becoming your signature brand’s style?
- It must be, because nature plays a big part in the collection inspiration, motion and movement. It is just more fun than a still life. But I am always open for new things and new ideas. If a collection needs to be shot in a clear white room without anything in it but the clothes, then that’s what the collection needs and that is what I will give for it. It is important not just to stick with the rules you build up for yourself and for your creations. 

- Define your own style.
- I like cute things as much as I like weird things as much as I like regular things as much as I like pretty things. It is a mix of them all put together so I feel convenient, safe, sexy, pretty, cosy and easy all the time.
Picture by Alexandra Waespi

- You are based in Zurich. Does it influence your creativity directly?
- I think in Zürich I am a bit less intruded by fashion forecasts and the fashion world in general, which makes my working here very comfortable and gives me a lot of peace and freedom. I believe that the country itself gives me a lot of inspiration with the beauty and the nature of it. Ever since I’m back here I enjoyed being outside even more than I did before. Although, I am a city boy and I need the busyness, noise, craziness etc. just as much as I need nature.
But the best thing about Switzerland or Europe in general is that if you want to you could be in the other city just in one hour anyway. So you can have it all!

- Name your biggest achievement so far?
- Working on my 5th season with constantly growing season by season and still be happy with everything I’m doing is the greatest achievement of them all.

- Do you still feel that you need to march and fight to get public attention?
- Of course! I’m a tiny little fish in the big sea. I already get a lot of incredible attention but unfortunately that doesn’t pay my rent yet. To point it out a bit more clear: 

Pinky: Gee, Brain, what do you want to do tonight?
Brain: The same thing we do every night, Pinky - try to take over the world!

- Plans for the near future: what will be your next career steps?
- I think I should go with the Pinky and Brain quote here once again.

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