10 things you need to know about tourne de transmission
Having moved to London to make it in music, Graeme Gaughan got into fashion through designing band T-shirts for his mates. He’s collaborated with Judy Blame and the late, great Barry Kamen on recent collections, and channels his teenage fury about...
1. Graeme moved to London to study music, not fashion
"I grew up in the west midlands, moved to London to study music production and sonic art. I was producing music and played in bands until 2009, but had been working in fashion since 2006 -- I started by working in stores part time to supplement the music income."
2. His fashion design career started with making band T-shirts for his mates
"When my band was winding up, I ended up putting music to the side for a while in a bid to re-discover the love for it. I was always messing around with graphic design and had started to design a few tees for bands I knew. This slowly became more of a personal project, which was to become Tourne de Transmission. I guess it was a creative rebound relationship that stuck!"
3. Graeme's earliest fashion memory is...
"Probably really wanting a Puma tracksuit. That was the first time I remember really wanting an item of clothing."
4. But getting into skateboarding changed everything
"I got really specific about which skate brands I wanted to wear, based on which riders I looked up to. I was a massive Mike Carroll fan and wanted to emulate his look and skate style - aggressive skating, baggy clothes, the cut of trouser hems, adidas gazelles or Puma classics. We have a pant called the 'plan B pant' which is a bit of an homage to that look, and it's kinda become a signature of the label."
5. The aesthetic of the brand is...
"Overtly informed by the tension between word and image -- this was my original MO, and as the label developed into fuller collections and I began to express my interest toward eastern clothing cultures, these two elements have formed the overall aesthetic."
6. It takes inspiration from…
"Asian clothing cultures and Japanese street culture in particular are always a continued focal point. Barry Kamen was a mentor figure and continues to be a huge inspiration, RIP. My wife is a also big inspiration when it comes to layering and silhouettes… she is always ahead of the game."
7. Working with Barry Kamen is Graeme's career highlight so far
"He gave me the confidence to push ahead and put myself out there. Even though I had worked in the industry for a while, it was in other fields, so it was quite a nervous situation for me to be out of my comfort zone all of a sudden But he made it feel like I had something to say and we were gonna say it; and we didn't need anyone's approval - that has stayed with me. He is missed a lot. I was also lucky enough to work with Judy Blame on the show following Barry's untimely passing. They were close friends so that was also a special moment. Watching him and Barry at work was a real privilege."
8. The autumn/winter 17 catwalk collection is a teenage rebellion against the Brexit government
"I am not looking outward to other parts of the world so much this season. Recent events have made me look inward a lot and I tried to understand how my teenage self would have reacted to this huge isolation of youth by the government. By not giving a generation a choice or voice when it mattered, the establishment have perhaps scored an own goal politically with the future. And when you put restrictions on a generation, and leave them no voice, they will react…!"
9. Tourne de Transmission x River Island Design Forum collection has just dropped in store
"The collection itself is mainly focused around my research into Japanese street culture - it's an area of constant focus for me, but usually is mixed up with some many other elements. With this project, I wanted to focus on one area and make that feel relevant for the River Island consumer. The team there were great to work with and it was nice to have a lot more design and research resources to play with. And consequently, I think we ended up with some killer pieces!"
Check out the campaign film, premiering exclusively on i-D.
10. TDT recently designed an installation for Harvey Nics
"We used the space in Harvey Nichols' newly refurbished menswear floor in Knightsbridge to really bring to life this idea of the nomadic, traveling searcher - the humble and peaceful warrior we referenced in the [spring/summer 17] collection. We took elements our show set, designed by Johnny Buttons, and reinterpreted these Tibetan 'wind horse'-inspired concepts into a shelter-like structure, touching on nomadic travelling living compartments. This is then used to shroud the collection in these visceral textures."
Text Charlotte Gush
Photography Max Jackson