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EXPERT HOMME Sergey Sysoev

What do you associate with men’s fashion?

– In General, men’s fashion is associated with a cool men’s suit and men’s fashion in Russia is associated with a second role after women.Men think much less about their appearance than women.

– But do we have fashion as it is?

– Of course, we do.

What is your attitude to the current fashion?

– It’s sad, because we have men who are afraid to express themselves, afraid to stand out, afraid to be funny, afraid to attract attention. For some reason, they want to be in the sidelines. It always surprises me, that men choose beautiful, stylish, well-groomed women, but for some reason, they choose other methods of attraction, do not work on their appearance, and focus on the financial aspect. Is it really easier? Attract attention with

an expensive car, rather than a properly selected t-shirt, in which it could look better, more interesting, more noble, fresher? It should be noted that this is changing very much now, everyone says that our Russian women are very beautiful, I would like to see our men spoken about as well as about Italians, for example.

What’s in store for men’s fashion?

– Not fast but very big breakthrough. I work with men costumes and see that much interesting men exist and those who think about their appearance have appeared.

This stage of competent image building has already passed for someone and they are ready to experiment there: pin a flower, choose a non-standard fabric, a mischievous tie, etc.

So we are waiting for changes, they are just not fast, they are slow and this also has its own reasons. There is such a factor as the climatic conditions in which we live and which, of course, interfere with us.

– Men who take care of their style are usually office workers or close friends of the fashion world.Some are classic and conservative, others are too pretentious and extravagant, can we find a balance?

– I think this balance will form itself. I see a very interesting picture when I look at our

modern youth. When will the complexes of our men, my peers, pass? Young people do not have these complexes at all. How my children dress, for example: one likes to dress up and is ready to wear a pink hoodie and orange socks, and the second does not think about

it at all, but when you offer him some bright images, he normally agrees. It seems to me that this is a natural process and it doesn’t take much effort to remake someone who doesn’t need it. The absence of qualifications and transparency of the entire world makes it possible to look equally interesting, regardless of where you live, in what country and in what city.

– In your summer show, the men were in quite strict suits and sandals, isn’t it too revealing for our men now?

– Well, a show is a show, and what’s interesting if it’s a black tuxedo dressed with black shoes? Once it was considered strange and incomprehensible how you can wear shoes without a sock, but we wear it, everyone is used to it, and now we wear sandals.

The main propaganda of the show was that a man should wear a cool tailored suit, and that a tuxedo can be worn with sandals in the summer.

– Are there many students who want to create clothing only for men?

– There is a problem with education. First of all, there are more girls among young

designers, fewer boys, and I always recommend that boys do men’s fashion. Because a boy can feel and understand his audience more and it’s cool to be a guide to his own style.

And women are not very good at dressing men, so they play with them like dolls. Maybe someone will judge me, but a man can feel a woman more and make her beautiful than a woman can feel a man. You need to make it beautiful and give it this emotion, help it like itself in what it offers. My experience with designers and even with my students in working on men’s collections, says the following: girls turned it all into a kind of clowning, always some shorts, flowers. I mean, they didn’t make men out of men.

But what about those fashion houses where women are in charge, they also dress men?

– Well, they dress, they dress better and worse. If we are talking about a global fashion house, then there are assistants working there. There is a leading designer, there is a sales analyst, and there is also a group of designers who work with men’s clothing.

Now unisex clothing becoming more and more popular, what can you say about it?

– I will say this, no matter how you dress, a man should remain a man and a woman a woman. That is, a man in a skirt can be quite masculine, and the history of the costume allowed anything, and all the first finds in fashion were made by men. Men wore skirts, lace, and for the first time a floral print appeared in a men’s suit. It was women who took it

from the men’s wardrobe, not the other way around. There were just some men who wanted something unusual, developed, produced fabrics, so it seems to me that now the concept of unisex is not relevant.

– Don’t you think that women who wear “men’s clothing” are a bit of a drag on men’s fashion in Russia, as if they are being selected?

– No, I don’t think so, the last year this trend for feminine dresses, solid dresses. So, they did not make a woman more feminine, unfortunately. That is, those who wanted to run an enterprise as a man, work in a Bank or in politics, they continue to work there, regardless of what they wear there and are successful in this.

And as for what to take from a man, you know, it seems to me that the main feature that defines a real man is generosity, so: well, take what you want. Here I am sitting in front of you in this contrasting suit in a large cage, I do not mind if the same suit will be on you, for example, or this fabric will be sewn dress.

A man should be generous and should not be hindered by the fact that a woman takes something from him, in principle, the whole history of fashion supports my words. A woman can’t hurt a man, a woman is weaker. In General, I believe that men can

and should be the trendsetters of men’s fashion. Not men as designers, but men as men’s collections.

– Do you think that our people are ready to buy quality clothing without some flashy brand?

– Of course, they are ready, and they are ready to mix it with well-known brands, and it is somehow interesting to combine it.

– What advice would you give to such brands that are trying to develop in Russia?

– I would wish them success. Usually these brands that have produced something for someone, realizing that they know how to do it, start to think that this is enough. And I have faced the fact that I was approached by a company that can make high-quality products, but they do not know what to do. They always need a designer’s vision of the actual product.

How can they be promoted in Russia? It can be a major representative: GUM, LILU, or it should be some kind of their own efforts?

– No, you can’t do it without your own efforts. This is a long conversation, the whole marketing policy, it’s all calculated. Who is this product addressed to? If it is addressed to someone whose name is important, then Yes, it is GUM, TSUM, or LILU. If the name is not important, it may be a market Gardener, for example.

Look, a high-quality product is not only a high-quality production, quality is to get into the customer’s desire and expectation.

There are not many manufacturers in Russia, but they are there. They ask me to develop the concept of “how to make a desired product”, because there is no problem to get dressed or buy a bag. Want a Gardener, GUM, Europe, no problem. The main

thing-there should be a desire to buy a bag that would be an art object and that could be inherited by your daughter.

Can these brands be art objects, but who should they target?

– They must decide for themselves who to target. Yes, this is a normal situation, but it seems to me that everyone should do their own thing. As I have said, is the one who creates, who produces, who sells there. But if manufacturers suddenly want to create and sell themselves, they need to understand who they want to create for and who they want to sell to, it’s simple.

– Will the luxury market suffer? If there are high-quality items, but without a label.

– Recently, it seemed to me that the luxury brands go a little into the middle niche. 5 years ago, we could not imagine that THE Valentino brand could make hoodies. So this logomania. In General, luxury brands are also thinking about what to do.

– Do you think that collaborations with designers “simpler” or with the mass market have lost the luxury?

– No, this is the right move, and it seems to me that when a designer or some famous person that people want to join in some way, made a collaboration, it works on the image of the person who did it. If you are a girl student, bought any cool designer with the h&m collaboration, then you have already become a little closer to your dream. You work, you

develop, and then you don’t buy Sonya Riquel from h&m, but Sonya Riquel.

All the same, the quality is different, collaboration is collaboration, but it’s still different, it’s like flirting with a different audience. An absolute marketing move, very good.

I have a lot of collaborations, and someone who finds out about my collaborations with Zhostovo or Churchill or Gzhel, then comes to me to dress. Has my brand suffered? No.It got new clients.

– Сan high-quality, luxury brands without a logo be competitive?

– They can, but you always need a history. If people pay 5 thousand rubles for a dress, they don’t care about the name, if they buy a dress for 35 thousand rubles, they care about what is behind it, they buy the history.

In my case, this is the history of the first fashion houses of the post-Soviet space, that is, they know that they can see who is behind it, what kind of personality, what values it carries, etc.

But you can make up a history, right?

– Yes, it can be invented, but everything secret becomes clear – this is absolutely a working, biblical principle. I am for the present, and behind the present are individuals, big teams, creativity and great work.