phillip lim nails it with nars

Phillip Lim and Nars' collaboration has been diva-glitzing the catwalks for an impressive 14 seasons. Phillip Lim's vivid palette is mixed in with the lusciously saturated world of Nars, the iconic maestro. It's a conversation between the bold and the...

by i-D Team
31 July 2014, 4:10pm

3.1 phillip lim autumn/winter 14

Why did you decide to work with NARS? What drew you to the brand?
I've always appreciated the aesthetic of NARS as a whole. For me, I'm attracted to everything about NARS, the packaging, the graphics and the sense of luxury that isn't too ostentatious.  It's so modern and luxurious, which is very on par with the 3.1 Phillip Lim universe.

In your opinion, what is the relationship between make-up and fashion? 
I think they both play a role in formulating the character that you want to be. Every day you get up, you feel a mood, you dress for that mood, and then you finish it off with make-up, nails and accessories. Your look becomes kind of like a mirror, like an art piece. 

Can you tell us about the final nail colours?
I call them colours that exist in the shadows because at first glance, you see one colour in the daylight and at night, you see another colour. It also depends on what you wear. I like colours that you can actually discover. To me, these colours are the essential 3.1 Phillip Lim colours. These are my colours. The colours that constantly inspire me, they are constantly threaded in everything I do. Every single shade or colour has appeared in the collections for the whole history of the company. With clothes and with beauty and with nails, it's really about supporting the wearer, the person who puts it on and these colours are transformative. They're not true colours. They're actually colours that blend and appear different to different people and different tones and different situations and time and day; and they always have such a dynamic quality.

Why did you choose the African Violet shade as the nail colour for your autumn/winter 14 show?
For me, it's such an enigmatic flower. In the daytime it's bright, but at night it even becomes more bright. That's something that I speak about, this quality of being dynamic and kind of being able to constantly evolve.

Do you have a favorite colour? 
I love them all, I love Anarchy and Dark Room because I don't think there is anything chicer than blue denim. I also love Gold Viper because it's so sophisticated, it's metal done in a way that's not gaudy.

What was your creative process to developing the collection?
We came up with inspiration boards for each colour, they were inspired by fabric, flowers, cars - from all facets of life, actually. Creating this nail collection was different because it's permanent, they had to be the essential colours of the brand and with the seasonal collections, you think about that season only and another season always follows. The medium of nail polish is so interesting to me because it's permanent. It goes on nails which are a fixed surface and it's pretty permanent. With seasonal collections you're dealing with transparent-ness, opaque-opacities. You're dealing with a surface that moves so, the saturation is always different, but with nail polish it's a controlled surface.

"Classic with a sense of madness," is the sound bite most associated with your aesthetic - how does this come across in the polishes? 
For me, I love things that constantly change and are dynamic and that's true about colours too, and I think it is a process of getting to a particular colour that you go through and it is like right before, right after the shade. They're not the true primary colours, they are actually two steps right before, or two steps right after. And to me, it's like they're shades of madness. 

What is your definition of beauty? 
It sounds cliché, but confidence. I always love a naturally unassuming beauty with something not quite perfect about this beauty.

In 2012 you won the CFDA Swarovski award for menswear, do you have an area you prefer, or like working in more? Menswear, womenswear, accessories?
It's funny because sometimes I think "Am I doing too much?" but I'm so curious about things and I think about things as a whole.  All of these categories (men's, women's, accessories) all exist in fashion, so it'd be strange to not embrace all of them. It keeps me inspired as a whole because I go back and forth between them, taking inspiration from each and at the end of the day they all formulate the world - your world.


Catwalk photography Mitchell Sams

Phillip Lim
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