NEW YORK, N.Y. - Luxury fashion can sometimes look like a fast-food business, Josep Font says, with items that are mass-produced and mediocre quality despite high prices.
The creative director of the Spanish fashion brand DelPozo works hard to avoid that: He takes pride in his attention to couture-level detail, delicate embroidery, craftsmanship, and in distancing himself from what he calls the made-in-China luxury brands found in cities around the world.
"When you talk about luxury you can think about many brands. The world is changing; the world is looking for another kind of luxury. A non-logo luxury, a luxury of things well done, with quality textiles," Font, 46, told The Associated Press.
Many have already noticed. When DelPozo showed collections at its first New York Fashion Weeks last year in February and September, it attracted an A-list crowd, which is unusual for a first-timer. Kiernan Shipka, who plays young Sally on "Mad Men," wore a DelPozo design to the 2013 Emmys and landed on several best-dressed lists. And Sarah Jessica Parker posed in a DelPozo floral dress for February's InStyle magazine.
Now Font is back for his third New York Fashion Week, gearing up to show his autumn-winter 2014 collection. Inspired by Italian post-cubist painter Duilio Barnabe and the futuristic novel "Logan's Run," the collection will include floral embellishments made of crinoline. Geometric shapes will play an important role, along with light blue, brown and beige colours, and wool and organza fabric.
Font took over the brand after its founder, Spanish designer Jesus del Pozo, died in 2011. "They called me because they knew I could get close to del Pozo*s essence. I knew his legacy, his work, very well," said Font, who presented his first DelPozo collection at El Capricho Park in Madrid in August 2012.
But while Font follows del Pozo's philosophy of using traditional dress forms for his designs, he also says he has "applied new forms, new colours, new volume."
"We are talking about fashion," he added. "One has to be very open and has to evolve."
Font's look is modern and extravagant, playing with volume and architectural shapes. Raffia jackets with inserted braiding, pants with pleats in relief, silk tops with bias-cut sleeves and strapless dresses with floral prints are elements of his collections.
DelPozo has a store in Madrid and recently opened another in Miami. The designs are sold in 17 cities, including Hong Kong and Dubai.
Font was born near Barcelona and studied architecture and fashion. He created a fashion brand that bears his name but had to leave it in 2009, after a legal battle. The designer took a break then, relaxing in the Ampurdan region of Catalonia and travelling afterward to China, where he designed bridal and party collections.
Now he is back in full swing, designing shoes and bridal gowns for DelPozo too. Every day, he says, represents a new challenge. "The day I don*t learn something new I will get bored and I will leave," he says.