Thom Browne
Founder and Head Designer, Thom Browne Menswear

Thom Browne on Designing for Women

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Thom Browne discusses the differences between the genders--when it comes to clothes.

Thom Browne

Thom Browne is a New York based men's fashion designer. After graduating Notre Dame, Browne moved to Los Angeles to try his hand at acting. Though he landed a few commercials, he wasn't terribly successful. He realized his true calling was in fashion, and in 1997 moved to New York. His first job was as a salesman in Giorgio Armani's showroom; he moved to Club Monaco's design and merchandising departments before launching his own label in 2001.

Browne's designs are something of a throwback to a pre-business casual era: New York Magazine has described his work as evoking "a fetishized, black-and-white-movie masculinity." The Council of Fashion Designers of America awarded Browne 2006 Menswear Designer of the Year. Browne designs with a very specific impression in mind: "It's a very nice, very Continental, very charming world," he says.


Question: How is designing for women different?

Thom Browne: The only challenge is technical . . . you know technically getting it to fit differently. But my approach for women’s was really just approaching it exactly like my men’s. It was very menswear inspired, so I really started from the same . . . same place as my men’s. So it wasn’t . . . there wasn’t really that much of a challenge, because it was . . . it was the beginning, and it was started the same way I started my men’s – very classically inspired; but you know made for that young girl who I think couldn’t really get this. And so in a way it wasn’t so hard to start it.


Recorded on: 10/29/07