We are in Nacka Strand just outside the Swedish captial. The air is as fresh and clean as the streets around here, giant ocean liners slide past the window heading towards Stockholm and the GANT headquarters is a hive of good-looking Swedes all perfect ambassadors of the brand. We're here to meet Bob Andrews, the new Creative Director for GANT.
Bob joined GANT in April 2010, and is responsible for the design and product development for all the GANT collections. American, Bob worked for Ralph Lauren for over 18 years and the past three years he has been working within the film industry. Bob gave TheChicGeek an exclusive sneaky peek of pre-fall 2011, which will go into stores in May or June next year. This is his first collection for the GANT. We managed to grab a few minutes with him to talk fashion, film and the future;
CG - Bob, you work 16 weeks of the year for GANT, what do you do the rest of the time?
BA - I think we're at like week 12 and I started in April, which shows you how that is working out. The idea was 16 weeks here and 10 weeks on GANT in New York. But it's turning out to be a full-time job.
CG - What did you plan to do?
BA - As I have a non-compete clause I can do interiors, films, anything but not fashion. The last film I did was called The Greatest and started Susan Sarandon and Pierce Brosnan.
CG - What do you find a harder business, fashion or film?
BA - For me film. I thought when I left Polo people would be knocking at my door. It doesn't happen that way.
I really like fantasy in film, all that grungy handheld stuff does nothing for me. I would like to do a Harry Potter, I know a lot of it is CGI but of a lot of it isn't. I liked a film called Nanny McPhee, it was done by a guy called Michael Howells.
CG - Is it important to have a theme when designing?
BA - I think that it is. We're working on fall/winter (2011), I wrote a summary about a family like the Royal Tenenbaums and it evolved from there. A family where the kids wear the parents clothes or the girl shrinks her brother's cashmere jacket so it fits better.
CG - Why did you leave Ralph Lauren?
BA - I'd had the same job for 18 years. I worked for the best, but I wanted to do something different. I wanted to work in film. I was a professional actor in Chicago before coming to New York and studying fashion at Parsons.
CG - How does Swedish fashion compare with New York fashion?
BA - Extremely refreshing. My friend's are so jealous. In America, Sweden is a little known gem. The air is beautiful. Manners are wonderful. I really like the kindness of the people.
CG - Do you have any style icons or ideals?
BA - I like preppy - but JFK, give me a break. That's what I would call 'Dumb Preppy', I want cool preppy like Woody Allen, the corduroy pants and the shoulder on the jacket, it looks effortless but is all very calculated.
CG - Bob, tell us about the new Pre-Fall 2011 collection?
BA - It's more urban. There is a lot more black but there is colour, red, navy and green. We did a film for the collection and the theme song was 'Come Together' by the Beatles and it illustrates the different collections, men's and women's all coming together.
CG - Do have a favourite piece from the new Pre-Fall collection?
I really like the black honeycomb cashmere sweater. (Pictured)