Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID

Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID Uptown’s Finest

by Charlotte Smith

20 Questions & PATRICK CUPID

Living abroad sometimes makes me miss New York.  I have a love-hate relationship with my home town, yet when I do I love to search from homegrown talent.  I liked to introduce you to the latest Designer to Watch, from the same hood as Jenny from the Block.

Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID

Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID

About the brand:

Beauty, softness, elegance, are employed by a confident hand capable of using those apparently innocent tools to construct a strength that carries a seductive appeal, flirtatiously sexy, but immensely empowering and liberating. 

Printed georgette, soft wool, draped silk wrap and structure the body, a balance between classic refinement and ingenuity. New techniques in pattern cutting achieve an optimal fit, which combined with such a curated language make this new collection completely authentic.  Every day wears that only New Yorkers can understand, yet the world’s chic city dwellers can adapt the style and wear well too. 

 

“Fashion is a language so think before you speak!”

PATRICK CUPID was born in the Bronx in the ’80s.  Now, let’s just swallow that pill for a minute. In fashion, it is all about the 1980’s New York club scene vibe. Patrick nails the everyday wear luxury vibe.  From work to the club wearable.  This American designer with formal education divided his time between the prestigious schools of F.I.T. and Parsons in New York and the Politecnico di Milano.  I am now miffed we didn’t pass each other in the hallways of at Parson’s New School for Design.  

Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID

Over the last ten years, Patrick has been working between the States and Europe as a consultant designer and visual stylist, all the time carefully compiling a design vocabulary uniquely his own.  Syllable by syllable building his own language that has roots as much in the deep cultural wealth of Europe as the rhythmic speed and seduction of New York, his home town and base.

D’accord! Full Name: PATRICK DIJON CUPID another reason I fell in love with the brand.  How cute is the name!  Find him on Social Media: IG: @PATRICKCUPID FB: PATRICK CUPID.  Or on the uptown streets of New York. 

SC: What was your first memory of fashion?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: The Bravo TV documentary on Karl Lagerfeld. It was the first time I knew what a designer was and that I was one too. I had been sketching clothing since I was 3 years old and hand sewing outfits for Barbie. I knew appearance was important but I had no idea that men drew clothes for a living. It answered a lot of questions for me.

Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID

SC: How did you discover your crafts?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  I didn’t! They were always with me. I would read a lot as a child I was fascinated by information and ideas both historical fact and fantasy. Drawing clothing was a way to be apart worlds I had no access too. I could sew the first time I picked up needle and thread it just made sense to me.  What I did discover was that I am a good designer. I knew I could do it but I didn’t assume I was great at it. I just knew I loved it more than anything.

SC: Print magazines Pros & Con’s?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: I think print is important period. Be it a Magazine or Book. They are physical records of our time. I have been featured in several works by the artist Kehinde Whiley. The audience and historians may not know my name but I was here. It is actual proof of existence. As the gatekeepers to public success, they are the best way for a brand to gain notoriety.

Designer To Watch: PATRICK CUPID

People accept the belief of social media being more important than print but and that is false. Social media give access to individuals we may not otherwise encounter. However, even those individuals rely on print media to know what is relevant.

I think the editors and writers at print publications are at fault for damaging the fashion industry. They inflate bad ideology because it’s trending. I also find that most people associated with print publications could use ego sedative. People think that most of the folk in fashion are shallow and fickle. I think this has a lot to do with magazine editors. They are very closed off to new talent and ideas. Many emerging talents have a hard time growing because they are shunned by print magazines. You don’t see this attitude toward newness in digital media.

I am also an environmentalist and I shudder at the idea of all that paper going into the trash. The idea that I bought a book for near $30 that will end up in the trash bin after a day is absurd to me.

The openness to new brands and ideas. This is where you can find what is next. Digital media is still growing and every day there is a new blog or digital magazine. These hungry young visionaries travel and meet people. They get in anywhere and everywhere they can. Not missing a beat.

They are vital because they communicate the philosophy of emerging brands exactly as they receive it. New talents in art and fashion can be found through digital media. They are not afraid to access the underground social scene and talk to the outsiders, who need these outlets to grow.  

Consumers want new names, new ideas, new artists, and new brands. This is why blogs, pod caste, online magazines, and influencers hold such a huge market share. They don’t just tell us what’s next they show it. And it is done in very relatable ways. They don’t adhere to any rules. They each have their own style that relates directly to an audience.

On the other hand, there are so many it hard to determine who is legitimate and who isn’t. Also, I find it hard to connect with many online magazines. They often have little or no direction. I find that many are just vehicles for self-promotion. These types don’t survive and abuse emerging talents willingness to let them in. There is a difference between celebrities and influencers attending shows to promote the brand vs. posting the look at me I got invited.

With larger digital platforms like, BOF, The Industry, and Fashion United you get insider information that goes beyond trend. They cover much more in-depth stories focused on the business side of the fashion industry. Though I would like to see them do more features on new talents. No market grows without new consumers and new consumers require new products.

SC: What is the Concept behind the collection? {FALL 2019-2020}  

“All in Jest” is inspired by the protagonist of royal court jester. A prominent figure in pre 17th century western culture. While all other courtiers were bound to tradition the jester had the ability to move in all social circles and the freedom to speak absolute truth without consequence.

PATRICK DIJON CUPID It’s a commentary on today’s women. No longer being bound by the social dictates they live as they choose. They choose who they are and society accepts without question. Which makes the historical reasoning laughable in my opinion. Thank god for entertainers who lived beyond the rules. We don’t categorize figures like Miley Cyrus, Viktoria Beckham, Naomi Campbell, or Meghan Markle. We know them by name and see them as they are no matter who they sit beside.

The clothing I design reflects that freedom and attitude. Praise of the individual who says I am because I am. Moving between social settings and events through the course of the day shouldn’t mean changing yourself six or seven times to fit in. Men are not asked to do this and they are certainly not challenged being the same at all times. We laugh it off with acceptance. I design with respect for the self, not the audience.

SC: What has been your favourite career moment so far?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: I have had many successes over the years, including being among several notable designers who showed with Gen Art. But nothing compares to presenting my first collection in Paris for the first.

SC: Snapchat or Instagram Stories?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: Instagram definitely I am not a huge social media buff. I think Instagram really allows you to reach the audience and offers the data to back it up. I don’t tweet and use other outlets that are to easy to for others to copy original concepts. Because you have a record of visibility with Instagram you also a bit protection for original ideas.

SC: What is TikTok and would you use it?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: Never heard of it so I cannot comment.

SC: Who is your dream designer to collaborate with?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: That was Karl Lagerfeld. He was the only designer I had truly wanted to learn from. He was truly a renaissance man. The next would Ralph Rucci. His work is beautiful.

SC: What is your must-have on the road beauty/grooming product?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  Clean and Clear foaming facial wash. I do not leave home without it.

SC: What are you up to when you’re not designing?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  At the museum or conversing with a contemporary artist or at home with music. My very best friend Pedro Macisse inspires a lot my work. Including “All in Jest”. In fact, the concept started with one of his paintings.

SC: Where do you see yourself in five years?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: Earning the CFDA designer of the year award. Aside from that in a loft in New York city preparing my next collection along with a team of brilliant tailors and seamstresses.

 SC: What designer house do you look up to?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: Currently Balmain. I think Olivier is a genius. And I wish him continued success.

SC: What would you change about the fashion game?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  The textile industry. I love the fabric and there is no fashion without great fabrics. But their needs to be regulations set on the price of fabrics. Overhead cost is already extremely difficult for an emerging designer. But I find it utterly disgusting when I am haggling a sample maker or manufacture for cheaper production cost when the price of one meter of fabric could pay the salary of 6 people. This isn’t right and is an issue we hear nothing about. We see how the animals are poorly treated and what chemical waste does to our planet and yet we are still asked to pay upward of $300 per yard for cashmere. This is not only detrimental to emerging brands stifles innovation and economic growth.

SC: What are you listening to right now?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  Willow Smith another musical genius, Odesa whose songs greatly influenced this collection, and Solange Knowles.

SC:  If one buyer would pick up your line who would you wish it to be?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: Jeffrey New York. I’ve been in love with that boutique since they opened.

SC: What boutique would you love to be in right now?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  Leclairreur! No question they are fashion.

SC:  What are you grateful for?

PATRICK DIJON CUPID: Courage! Without it I would not have survived. My life has a been a roller-coaster of success and tragedy. At one point I was actually homeless perusing this dream. It is my courage that changed all that along with the loving support of friends.

SC:  What advice would you give emerging designers like yourself?  

PATRICK DIJON CUPID:  Be open, stay focused no matter challenge you face, and talk to people who know more than you. This is a business where partnerships key. No one does everything by themselves and remember that what you design isn’t all about you.

Merci beaucoup Monsieur Cupid.  After having the privilege of interviewing you we love your esthetic, vibe, advices and creations.   Good luck and we will see you one day at the LVMH Prize reception!  Excuse my Franglais.

PC

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