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Raf Simons Divulges in First Interview Since Dior Departure

Raf Simons is coming to some important realizations, and not a moment too soon. In a new interview with the New York Times’ T Magazine, his first since departing from Dior in 2015, Simons opens up about everything from his very beginnings in furniture design, his greatest achievements, and his biggest regrets, to his hopes for the future of his career and of men’s fashion in general.

Raf Simons's SS15 ad campaign.
Raf Simons’s SS15 ad campaign.

Fashion, it seems, has never been just about the clothes for Simons. Rather, it connotes a deeply artistic and emotional experience which, according to Simons, is regretfully absent in menswear design. He hopes to assuage this absence, however. “Sometimes [in] a lot of the men’s I don’t even find fashion,’’ he says. ‘‘I find wardrobe…. Does it impress me? Not really…. I just wonder why more men’s fashion can’t push, and can’t try to take the responsibility. That men could manifest themselves the way that women manifest themselves.” It’s a challenge, he admits, but one we may all agree Simons is more than qualified to accept.

Raf Simons, possibly in the middle of an existential crisis.

For now, the Belgian designer is putting most of his energy toward his own brand, and has also alluded to the possibility of taking on more creative director posts in the future—not, however, at any “huge institution” like Dior. At such big-name brands, he says, it’s hard to feel like an integral part of the team. “I could never take the attitude that this thing stands or falls with me,” he says. “I don’t experience it as something that I have to make mine. It’s not mine.’’

Simons’ menswear looks throughout the years.

Simons doesn’t mention what exactly the future entails for his career—nothing is mentioned of his rumored role at Calvin Klein, for instance. It’s clear to see, though, that he is prioritizing emotional honestly and creative freedom above all else. And while we may not know exactly what’s in store for the designer, it will doubtlessly be something he’ll be proud of.

Images via the New York Times and Yahoo.

Stay tuned to Milk for more fashion news. 

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