Hassani Hamilton Talks STL And The Launch Of His Newest Collection

By Sarah Stallmann
In Style

In preparation for his spring/summer launch on Sunday evening at Blank Space, we chatted with designer Hassani Hamilton about the new Hassani Saint Louis collection, the progression of the fashion industry and his aspirations for the city of St. Louis.

Photo by Baylen Whitfield.

Photo by Baylen Whitfield.

Can you tell us a bit about your new collection and the inspiration behind it? Is it men’s/women’s/unisex?
The new Spring/Summer collection is filled with unisex pieces blended by progressive styling as well as innovative garment construction. A lot of the inspiration stems from a futuristic approach, elaborating on modern designs. My inspiration follows the high/low fashion format and is inspired by geographical areas from America to the Far East.

The fashion industry has been in a bit of strange place internationally with the fast fashion movement reaching its peak and luxury brands experiencing rapid shifts due to the changes in the market. How have those shifts made an impact on you as an emerging designer?
In fashion, we constantly reference periods of time with clothing and styling and it is now allowing us to move forward with the design aspect: styling/color isn’t pushed, garment construction isn’t pushed and if it is, it’s thrown into the avant garde and never seems to make it to the masses at a comfortable price.

Meanwhile, so much money is made off repetition it’s like the Jordan shoe game. Obviously, I really don’t have the answers on where it’s going … I know I’ve seen the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s three times over and it’s boring me and my friends. I was in that space for awhile and I’m over it and ready to push forward on my end, keeping tomorrow in mind while creating.

How long have you been designing and how did you get your start?
It’s been nearly 10 years of designing; five for Hassani Saint Louis professionally. Honestly, I’m only facilitating what’s been in my DNA all along. My aunt and grandmother are seamstresses, I have two aunts who are hairstylists, cousins that model and some who are makeup artists. I owe it my ancestors; I’m honored to be a part of a creative faction.

Do you find that this is a more manageable city to launch a creative project in? Why or why not?
Can you create something in St. Louis and launch it? Yes. Can you create something in St. Louis and the people allow it to last and take pride in it? Now, I think that’s an area that has a huge disconnect within our city. How we get connected is to start supporting the best the city has to offer, not your mediocre friend. St. Louis can be a great city but we have to expose the best here.

View the Spring/Summer 2016 collection by Hassani Saint Louis on Sunday at 7pm at Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee.

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