SEP. 25, 2017

Newcomer brand questionnaire | This is James

Joanne Kim

Global Fashion Collective presented by VFW


This is James


Joanne Kim


Men’s / Ready To Wear

Brand information / About the designer

―What inspired you to become a fashion designer? Describe developments leading up to the brand launch.

I wanted to become someone that could make a difference and I wanted the difference to be something that I can truly feel passionate about. I appreciate the functional aspect of “clothing” but what gets me super excited is its wondrous aesthetic aspect – colors, textures, smell, temperature, sound, and details including pretty much anything and everything that goes into the process of designing and making it into a 3D form, and I call this process “Fashion” in a conventional term but also “Passion” which has led to me launching a menswear brand “This Is James”.

―What is the brand’s concept? What do you want to communicate through fashion designing? What are the images of men and women you want to project?

“This Is James” He reminds us of James – perhaps he is James Dean or James Bond? You can decide. The team behind this menswear label TIJ are inspired by a rich mix of cultural influences. The philosophy is to create an individual with a unique style by mixing the best cultural influences from the past, the present and the future for the modern man. Innovative use of materials, details and colors produces an overall look that is classic and modern but also edgy and eccentric. In addition, wearable – comfortable and commercial. The vibrant collection – shorts, pants, sweats, jackets, blazers, coats, tops/shirts are designed for a modern gent. The typical TIJ customer has strong beliefs and is not afraid to make a style statement. Though not trying to make it obvious, can’t help but get noticed for his sense of fashion and charisma.

―What is your source of inspiration in creating fashion? What is your process of developing a design concept?

Weirdly I am inspired by too many things – anything that stimulate my senses can inspire me. I do think Music plays a huge role in developing a design concept when I start on a new collection. The process goes something like this: Music –> Feels and Vibes –> Colors and Textiles–> Theme –> Design Concept —> Music –> Feels and Vibes –Colors and Textiles –> Collection


―Who are your current stockists (areas, retail formats, etc.)? Describe the typical followers of your brand.

Currently This Is James is operating on its own – from design to production to retail. Via online and/or direct contact. My customers (Male: Age 20 – 40) have very unique taste. They have meticulous eyes – they love details and uniqueness of designs.  They do not follow trends at all. Always wants something no one else has.

―Which brands, designers, styles and cultures have had the most impact on your fashion designing, and why?

Christian Dior – he is my ultimate hero on all levels. He is a genius – the most brilliant designer and the most passionate man.  His passion is reflected on all the garments he created while he was alive. Details, Silhouettes, Details, Silhouettes… If I could be born again, I would love to be born as his assistant. Imagine what I could learn from this genius!!!! Though I read somewhere his assistants were always so busy wiping the sticky crumbs and flakes off his hands and fingers – apparently, he loved the French pastries so much that he was eating them while he was working on garments! Ha!

About 2018 S/S collection

―Why have you chosen Tokyo(Amazon Fashion Week TOKYO) as the venue for presenting your collection?

My 2018 S/S Collection is a denim collection. What can I say… Denim in Tokyo! I admire Japanese denim. I am in love with Japanese fabrics. I very much look forward to learning from the Japanese Fashion Industry.

―What is the concept / image for your brand’s 2018 S/S season?

Good Boy – a badass good boy in hoodie coats, leather shorts with leggings, crisp white shirt underneath, elbow patch sweaters, school boy cardigans, denim Sherpa coat, stripe wool pants and more…  “I am a good boy but you never know” … It is a good boy with a badass attitude. He represents a confident, self assured and ambitious young gent.
good boy x badass  = “This Is James” for 2017A/W.

―What is your vision for your show / installation?

The concept is “Love Tonic”. It is for all men who have fallen in love in this season (2018 S/S) – the design concept is inspired by first love in a conventional term which is portrayed in the designs/looks. “Love Tonic”. A man has fallen in love. It’s like his first love, again… It’s silly but deep.


―What are your brand’s future outlook and goal?

Just try to focus on three things only: Quality, Passion and People. I don’t think much about other things.


―What does Tokyo represent for you?

Calm, Resilient, Solid and Eccentric

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