Sunday, October 23, 2011

Menswear Mondays-James Kearns

James Kearn Suit. Photo by Dani Riot
The work of James Kearns is not something that you can just pass by. His jackets may appear understated at first glance but the quality, technique and the texture of them alone are shouting out to grab your attention. 

Kearns has designed a range of jackets which emulate suit (dinner) jackets, adding another dimension to the concept of leather jackets. The colours range from a crisp, clean white, a pewter grey through to a jet black, the traditional colours of dinner jackets. Kearns' trademark of sharp tailoring mixed with a rough/unfinished edge is prominent in this collection, drawing the attention of young, stylish men looking for a creative take on a wardrobe staple. 

James Kearn Suit. Photo by Dani Riot
What makes his jackets so special is not just the impeccable tailoring but the choice of fabric used to create them. Each jacket is made from unlined pig skin which has either been waxed or used as suede to give each jacket it's own unique texture. Due to the fact it is unlined, the jacket can easily mould to the wearer's body creating a second skin and taking the term 'bespoke tailoring' to the next level. 

James Kearns Suit. Photo by Dani Riot
James Kearns does not just stop there when it comes to his designing talents. Having been a successful designer for over 5 years,he has only just been recognised as an up and coming designer. He has taken this opportunity to branch out and has created a womenswear line which keeps the same principles of the menswear collection but adds a feminine, sexy edge to the garments. His new passion however, lies in women's shoes which also have been adapted from his original menswear shoes and given a feminine edge. 

Moda de la Mode has been lucky enough to interview the designer himself and in addition to this, I have been given some exclusive photos of his new shoes for women. You will see them nowhere else....
James Kean's Womens Shoes. Photo: James Kearn's iPhone
Womens Shoes by James Kearns. Photo: James Kearns' iPhone

What made you decide to design menswear?

I was designing for myself primarily as I was unable to find what I was looking for and after wearing my own designs I started getting outside interest and that's really where the label began.

When did you first start designing? 

Just over 5 years ago.

Tell me about your decision to move into womenswear too!

It has always been a great interest of mine and it happened quite organically becoming the next step in the label and once I got started I got really inspired by the silhouette and the lines and how to give the designs a similar feel to the menswear but with a sexy, feminine edge.

What motivates you to design and what has been the most motivational thing to happen to you with regards to design?

It's all about the leather and the quality of the product I use. It is incredibly difficult to source the materials and leathers I work with and am starting to build up an international network of contacts who know and understand the type of leather and quality I am looking for which leads me to source from various countries and every now and then I will come across something so amazing that it can inspire 100 new ideas.

Talk me through the design process. Does the footwear design process differ greatly from the suit tailoring design process? 

Yes absolutely. Everything I do is completely hand made including the shoes which is an incredibly laborous process and the only machines I use are my sewing machine and a machine to cut the soles out because they are too thick to do by hand which then get re-worked to give it that rounded finish, but the end result is something completely unique every single time, and the shoe itself becomes it's own story we dont hide the nail marks inside the shoe as it shows all our shoes are hand lasted and the carved sole is never sanded to a polish the whole process makes it a very honest.
Having said that at this very moment after having purchased just over 240 foot of leather and from that struggling to find 26 square feet to cut one jacket to specification can sometimes make the footwear process seem much simpler..

What is the future of the James Kearns brand?

Right now we are looking at pushing the standard conventions of tanning and hoping to soon be collaborating with a tannery in Holland to be working on some very experimental and unusual tanning techniques which I hope will show new possibilities that can be done with leather. 

If you are interested in seeing more designs by James Kearns, please visit his profile on Tell Us Fashion

You can also visit James Kearns' website and his blog or if you are interested in Dani Riot you can visit his website.

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  1. Thanks for the website link!! xx

  2. I like tha last shoes!I also have a fashion blog ,come to see it: if you wan we can followe on bloglovin each other! :)

  3. Congratulations on winning the TellusFashion competition with Independent Fashion Bloggers! We look forward to meeting you at our launch party.

    The TellusFashion Team

  4. Well his jacket is an understatement how good the quality on it, good texture and so comfortable to wear. These are actually the most important to consider in choosing clothes.

    custom wardrobe designer



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