4 posts tagged "John Patrick"
It struck more than a few observers as odd that Organic designer John Patrick chose to present his Spring ’10 collection at, of all places, a steakhouse. What would Michael Pollan say? Doesn’t the production of one pound of beef require something like 100 gallons of water and emit about 15 lbs. of CO² into the atmosphere? Isn’t swearing off burgers and filet mignon the greenest thing you can do? “I eat meat!” protested Patrick at the presentation this morning. “I eat organic meat, and I eat it in moderation, and I buy it from family farms that are local to me. But, look, it’s a choice. You can’t make everyone a vegan.” As Patrick went on to explain, the choice of the old-school Keens Steakhouse in Midtown as his location had everything to do with its speakeasy vibe, which jibed with the new Organic collection’s Krazy Kat club inspiration and had nothing whatsoever to do with meat. “That was the idea,” he reiterated. “Speakeasy.” It was suggested that, perhaps, Patrick could split the difference and think of Keens as a steakeasy. “OK,” he said. “Don’t make me get on my bicycle and bike out of here.”
Fashion folk have a reputation for being food-phobic, but the fact of the matter is there’s nothing that makes a harried editor happier than arriving at a fashion week presentation and finding a spread. Cookies! Fresh bread! Locally produced Camembert! These were the wonders laid out at Organic’s Fall ’09 presentation on Monday. Designer John Patrick had invited a coalition of upstate farmers to sell their wares bake sale-style at the event, with a serving of food policy on the side. “We’re a Hudson Valley-based nonprofit,” Severine von Tscharner Fleming said of her organization, the Greenhorns, which supports young American farmers while she was hawking cookies and bicycle flags. “No one’s bought any of the flags yet,” she noted, as models clad in Organic’s farmer-inspired Fall collection dallied nearby. “I was kind of hoping we’d come out of this show with a big bicycle-flag fashion trend.” Von Tscharner Fleming may be on to something—what with the cuts in car services this fashion week season, harried editors would be well-advised to invest in a bike.
“Green” is a word on the tip of everyone’s tongue these days, but for John Patrick, the concept isn’t merely talk. The Organic designer has been at the forefront of the sustainable style movement, treating his brand as a proving ground for eco-minded innovations like recycled fabrics, impact-free dyes, and local sourcing. Patrick is dead serious about the values of Organic, and yet he’s made each collection so much fun. Betting that shoppers will happily integrate into their wardrobes streetwise chic pieces that just happen to be green, Patrick has built his brand into a sustainability success story. This year, Organic was tapped as a finalist for the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award. The winner of the 2008 prize will be announced November 17; in the meantime, Patrick answers Style.com’s questions about life in the Top Ten.
What made you want to be a designer?
I’d been making things all the time as a child, but when I was 13 or 14, I saw this article about Halston in Life magazine and that really affected me. His world seemed like this incredible fantasy. And then, after that, [it was] sitting on the stoop and reading W back in the day. I’m talking the seventies here. That was dreamy.