We were lucky enough to meet British-based fashion designer and pattern cutter Masato Jones at #EBFashRev18 as part of Fashion Revolution Week. Masato has dressed Justin Timberlake, Adele and Beth Ditto and is currently working with Nick Cave’s wife, Susie Cave on her own brand ‘The Vampire’s Wife.’ Masato also has his own label.
So what are you working on at the moment?
In the next few months, I’ll start researching my next collection. I source the fabrics first. I used to start the research first or I’d choose a mood and then I’d start collecting fabric to fit with it. I found it a bit difficult sometimes. So now I start by looking at fabrics. Then when I develop a new collection I go to my fabric archive and start a story from there. Once I have a strong idea, I start making samples and do fittings. Then I ask ladies for their opinions.
I like the idea of a two-piece dress, I’ve never made one before but I like the idea of dresses that have a separate top and skirt in the same fabric. So you can enjoy them as separates but they also look like a dress. I make patterns for a living, so I am constantly trying to find new shapes of tops and dresses, but that is what I have in mind right now.
What era of fashion most inspires you?
I like the 1940s. I like Candy Girls and that kind of thing. It’s quite a distinctive style so I try not to make it look too obvious that my influence is from the 40s. I won’t lie, I like classic Christian Dior couture, I like the Paris couture pieces from Valentino. I like the old style. That kind of femininity always inspires me a lot.
Does the idea of timeless fashion appeal to you?
If you create fashion it only lasts six months, if you make style that is timeless. I always aim for style rather than just making clothes. My philosophy is style first, clothes later.
When we are taking photos people often say maybe we should get close up and get more of the detail. But I don’t want to just sell clothing, I want to sell the whole image. You can’t lose that.
What are your thoughts on fabrics, especially natural fibres?
I like to stick with the more natural fibres. It’s more challenging. I understand that clothes made from manmade fabrics can sometimes look beautiful and the same effect can’t always be achieved through natural fibres. As long as the manufacturing process of the fabric makes sense to our lives then I have no problem with it, but if there is a question mark over how it was made then I struggle to use it. I think it’s more about the manufacturing process than the actual fabric sometimes.
Aside from fair wages and carefully sourcing fabric what else makes Masato an ethical company?
We do charity work for homeless people as well. The Masato Homeless Support Collection. If you look up Beanies Masato on twitter you can find out all about it. We sell beanies but also get people to make things and sell them, to raise money for the homeless. You see so many people living on the streets when you’re in the city, we can’t just ignore that. So at Masato, we make clothes and we also do charity work too.