namacheko give us an exclusive preview of their autumn/winter 19 collection
It's inspired by students, Sweden and oil colours.
Photography Vicky Schoukroun
The last two years have been a whirlwind for Dilan and Lezan Lurr, who founded their menswear label Namacheko in January 2017. Initially inspired by their Kurdish heritage and their lives in Europe in a cultural cross-pollination, Namacheko focus is on uncomplicated beauty, the interplay between cut and fabric and colour and unexpected details. The brand was an instant success -- it’s already stocked everywhere from DSM to LN-CC to The Broken Arm -- but Dilan and Lezan never intended on becoming fashion designers. The siblings both studied civil engineering in Sweden, and Namachecko started life as a photographic exploration of the differences in generations between Kurdistan and Sweden. Now they are returning to their pre-fashion days for inspiration for their autumn/winter 19 collection, looking to a time when Dilan was a 23-year-old student in Lund. We caught up with them for an exclusive preview…
Hello Dilan and Lezan, how are you today?
Today is good, it is late at night, we’ve finished the castings for the show and started on the looks. We’re still working on a few last pieces, so there is a lot going on, but we feel very calm and confident.
Can you say a little about what you are planning for this season?
I have looked into a time in my life when I was a 23-year-old student on the civil engineering programme at the University of Lund in Sweden. Since our latest summer show I have been spending a lot of time thinking about why I didn’t want to become a engineer in the end. So this season is a technical collection in terms of engineering in fabric development and changes to very essential element of garment construction, such as darts. Then we are referencing a bit wider in terms of different art genres that don’t necessarily have anything in common, as a reflection on the mind of a lost 23-year-old engineering student.
I hear it is not so much about your Kurdish background this season? Why not?
Well we think it is something we have worked with because we've felt safe with that story to begin with. But in terms of being able to evolve as a designer you need to change your reference points and sometimes change the way you work. That is mainly what we have done here, and then we would like to hopefully change again after this. We need challenges to evolve, safe options don’t attract us in terms of moving forward.
How do your themes and inspirations come together? Is it very natural process? How did you settle on theme for the show?
It comes a lot from reflection on the previous collection at the first stage. But it goes further into referencing things that we have known about for a long time and feel is right for that particular theme. For example this collection, the inspirations are a lot about students and office workers, which is in away very natural as I still live in Lund and I do a lot of research at the University Library. It is something that is very close to me.
What other unexpected influences might there be? what else was on the moodboard this season?
There are some oil paintings that were on the moodboard that later became this jacquard mohair knit. These also got printed. This was sort of outside the main references, but more focusing on a specific timeframe where I stopped going to university and painted a lot of oil colours. It references the way oil colour blends when still wet. It resembles the mind when you go to all the student parties or play video games all night with other students that are also in the same lost sense.
You have become quite successful quite quickly – do you feel this as pressure? Or excitement?
Well both, it is very exciting and fun as everything goes so fast, collection to collection. Then the pressure is there as well, which is not as comforting. However the pressure is very important to keep me focused.
What are your tips for coping with the stress of putting together a show?
Well, we both used to become very stressed during the whole period leading to the show. But now not so much, sure a lot of coffee and cigarettes but it's a luxury to have the whole team together with our friends who help us at the same place for that period, we are more focusing on really enjoying that.
And what do you enjoy about it most?
We enjoy the people that work with us, our partners in Belgium and Japan and our team, and the fact that we all work together many hours every day of the two weeks before the show, but we also laugh a lot during this period.