Every once in a while, we will receive a lookbook that really stands out. I was enamored with FACTORY By Erik Hart—a range of clean lines, a balance between androgyny and femininity, and muted colors with such a loud impact. FACTORY By Erik Hart exudes confidence and vulnerability within its urban and minimalistic styled collection. More than that, FACTORY works for all seasons as the pieces look perfect for layering. Be sure to check out the FACTORY By Erik Hart dress giveaway on our Chic Rewards — it’s gorgeous!
Designer Erik Hart of FACTORY By Erik Hart tells us about his collection, work, and gives us some advice on personal style.
AMETHYST WANG: Can you give us a short bio about yourself, you know, the basics?
ERIK HART: My backgrounds are in fashion, contemporary art, sound, photography, video, art direction and installation. It’s these practices which make up the whole of my latest collection FACTORY By Erik Hart, in addition to the many projects I create in various fields. I’m entirely self taught, and have been working within fashion for approximately 8 years.
AMETHYST: Your Fall ‘11 collection uses mostly black, white and neutral tones. What’s with your love of these colors?
ERIK: At the core of my design sensibility is the idea that things shouldn’t be defined by season or limit the person wearing the clothes. I prefer to stick to a color palette which consists of things that can be worn virtually with any outfit and at any time of year. I love the idea of seasonless dressing. I also use the idea of print to mimic the feeling and purpose of color in my collections. All the prints are composed of my original artwork and really set a mood for the collection.
AMETHYST: Why should we love your collection?
ERIK: I think it’s quite simple—the clothes I make are much more than fabric. They represent a creative ethos and conceptual movement. They are one facet of a creative whole, which also encompasses installation, video, sound, and objects. In addition when you buy a piece from the FACTORY By Erik Hart collection you are owning something that will fit impeccably, has amazing quality, is designed with originality, and also won’t make you feel guilty as the prices are very honest and fair.
AMETHYST: Who/what is your fashion inspiration?
ERIK: I’m inspired by many things, usually things which are outside the direct scope fashion. Conceptual art is a big influence on my collections. Additionally I love to look at the way people wear clothes as opposed to focusing on a specific item. It’s all about the silhouette and attitude projected by the person. I’m a firm believer that clothes shouldn’t wear a person, but the person should wear the clothes.
AMETHYST: How do you define confidence?
ERIK: Confidence is all about conviction and being in touch with the core idea of what you’re doing is right for you, regardless of what others think. This is usually something that comes with experience and age, so don’t worry if you don’t have it yet. It will come. And the best way to discover it is through experimentation, and getting outside your comfort zone.
AMETHYST: If you could only wear one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it be?
ERIK: My vintage Yohji Yamamoto black cotton jumpsuit, with my favorite Margiela cardigan and my George Cox creepers. The outfit encompasses comfort, sophistication, ease, and utility.
AMETHYST: What do you have planned for the future, fashion or non-fashion related?
ERIK: I’m always working on at least 3–4 projects at any given time. Currently I just wrapped up shoots for the FACTORY By Erik Hart Spring 12 collection which we are getting ready to launch. Also we’re in the midst of planning our NY Fashion week presentation. In addition to that I have been working on sculptures and paintings, and I’m also finishing a project which I recently worked on while in London and Berlin. I have an online diary which you can follow and see all the things which encompass the collections, behind the scenes, previews, my travels, and also the many art projects and collaborations I’m always working on. You can follow at ERIKHARTPROJECTS.tumblr.com
AMETHYST: Do you have any advice for fashion lovers as far as dressing and finding personal style?
ERIK: Always keep it pure and honest. When putting an outfit together focus on a key piece and build a look around that. Nothing you add to the look should compete or over power that key piece. I also find its better to invest in more quality pieces which will last longer and you can wear season in season out. It’s better to buy one great well designed and made piece, than purchasing five cheaply made trendy knock offs that will fall apart and go out of style in 2 months. This will also help you streamline your wardrobe, and help to support the creative people who work so hard to create beautiful things and ideas.
Thank you Erik Hart and Sarah Friel of Omen PR for setting up this interview and for giving away a FACTORY dress on our Chic Rewards! We look forward to future work from FACTORY By Erik Hart! To find out more about the collection, be sure to visit the site FACTORY By Erik Hart.
by Amethyst Wang
Images via FACTORY by Erik Hart