Two weeks ago iNDiViDUALS celebrated the new S/S17 collection in a true AMFI spirit – a launch party that attracted many young creatives from Amsterdam’s fashion scene. We evaluated with Branding student and Event Manager Rumen Rachev.
Interview by Roy Doron. Photos by Geesje Remijnse.
Now eleven years ago AMFI initiated the Reality School program iNDiViDUALS, a platform for fashion creativity and a specialization program for third and fourth year students to experience real-time fashion industry demands. All tasks and responsibilities are run by students from the Design, Management and Branding departments. Fusing these three departments makes for the successful formula of the brand. As students are part of the brand for only one season (and so one study semester), the brand is a collective of creative minds that always changes. A new generation takes over the work of a previous generations, but also adds a new collection to the brand. That way a student always works on three collections: one collection that is on sale, the production of the collection that was presented on the catwalk last and the development of a new collection. The brand aims to achieve a balance between creative and commercially appealing; between creative sustainable freedom and economic value. Now that iNDiViDUALS is turning 21, the brand has officially grown up and has become a great creative platform for AMFI students.
Working with the brand for two months already, what was your main activity so far?
“As the Event Manager of the current generation, my first priority was to get familiar with the spirit of the S/S 17 collection and translate the concept into an retail experience for guests and customers to enjoy for ten weeks at the byAMFI Statement Store. The end result is a great collaboration between the teams of both iNDiViDUALS and byAMFI. I realised during the process is that team work really brings out the best of people! It was a challenge, since we are always working two seasons ahead, however we are presenting a collection, created by a generation of students before us. It’s an interesting switch that requires flexibility, but it was all a pleasurable and enjoyable process.”
Can you share with us the story of the S/S 17 collection that is now on sale in byAMFI?
“The concept of this iNDiViDUALS collection spins around the idea that you don’t need to scream in order to be heard. In such uncertain political times and aggressive approach, iNDiViDUALS wanted to showcase a silent manifesto, proving that being thoughtful has a bigger impact than being unnecessarily loud.
What was very interesting for me while I was going through the brand books of the collection was the fact that a lot of their research conclusions actually turned real, as for instance Trump getting elected. It is a scary fact, but it definitely tells something about our research skills if we look positively on that.”
What did you like personally about this collection?
“Apart from falling in love with the idea behind the collection, the subtle colour scheme is very thought through. The black clothes as well as the long pieces are very androgynous. The black jacket is my personal favourite. “
What does it take to create such an event in a short period of time? How did your last days look?
“It’s a tricky business as I call it, since this is the first event we as a generation encountered. We are still in awe; very excited about joining iNDiViDUALS and all of sudden we had just a few weeks to organize such an elaborate event. Team work and clear communication turned out to be essential! Luckily for me as an event manager I had the best team members that really helped execute our ideas. we had a seamless work flow towards the end result. Surprisingly the last days appeared to be the most relaxed ones, since everything was organized on time and each detail was already on its place.”
I recognize many fashion students here, what do you think attracted all of them to come for the launch?
“Besides the inspiring collection you mean? Well I guess it is because AMFI people stay together, which is a very special and positive thing at this school. We help each other and I really felt supported during the event. I think for everyone who wants to join iNDiViDUALS it is essential to attend our events, because it gives a good idea of what will be expected of you later on.”
Are you happy as well?
“My personal goal as an Event Manager and an AMFI student was to create an event that entertains and excites people. Based on the positive feedback I got from our guests I couldn’t be happier! Besides it being an exciting launch for iNDiViDUALS, this event was a very good start for our generation as well. And I promise there will be exciting and fabulous events to come this semester!”
Missed the opening? The latest iNDiViDUALS presentation is for nine more weeks on display (and on sale!) in the by AMFI Statement Store. You can see the full S/S17 on the catwalk here: