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Collabs: Hussein Chalayan Does J Brand Denim, Questions Models-Turned-Designers

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Image via <a href="http://modelizing.blogspot.com/2009/07/barneys_30.html">Modelizing</a>
Image via Modelizing

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On the occasion of the launch of his collaboration with J Brand jeans, Hussein Chalayan talks to WWD about why a designer known for his avant-garde aesthetic would branch out into jeans. Chalayan, who is also Puma's creative director, clearly believes in balancing the out-there—"mechanical dresses and LED effects," as WWD puts it—with the practical. It might be this level-headedness that makes him tell the magazine he's "weirded out by" the whole model-turned-designer phenomenon:

If you have a really strong sense of style and people want to aspire to being like you, I can understand that. But if you really are doing it just because you think of yourself as a brand and you haven't had the training and you know nothing about clothes, it kind of demeans all the training that designers have had.
Not being shy, he told this to Kate Moss, who laughed it off. The jeans, by the way, are currently in the window at Barneys in New York City, although it's a little hard to see them in Modelizing's photos.
· Chalayan's New Channels [WWD, subscription req'd]
· Barneys [Modelizing]