One of my earliest fashion heroes was Ann Demeulemeester; at 13, it seemed like she was making clothes specifically for my angsty, artsy mind, for the kid wanting to be taken seriously through aggressive gear and talk of Sartre. Growing up, I began to see the other side of her creations. Combat boots are tough, but they make thighs more fragile – black is broody, but it makes skin more delicate. That juxtaposition of tough second skin and a pulsing, breakable human core, that armour-and-key-to-the-heart sheath of fabric is what kept her close to my mind all these years. At fourteen I wore a pair of her trousers all through summer, and I was never more honest to myself than during those three months. Returning home after the holiday I was someone else – partly because of her, as her work had shown me how to look inward before gazing into the mirror. Clothes are invitations; hers invite others into your soul.
Read an interview with Ann Demeulemeester here.