Kezako was born in 2019 out of the creative impulse of two friends. Working in the industry in Paris, they discovered that fashion can also be a hobby; independent of any market forces. In this interview, the duo discusses fake fashion, commercial labels, and moral hypocrisy with the ease of people who play rather than work. With its upbeat and irreverent attitude, Kezako asks what it takes to make fashion as we dreamed it when we were kids: without rules, without order, without restrictions, without thinking about finances.
Can you share a bit about your background?
We have been friends for more than 10 years now, and we both worked in fashion.
How did you decide to start a brand as a duo?
We started making custom-made pieces for Charlotte’s editorials, as she works as a fashion editor. At first, we did not think of starting a label, but at the time of crediting the pieces we decided to invent a fake “brand”, so it would appear on the same level as the other, real, brands. It was more of a private joke than a brand launch…
Is it hard to make decisions when it is two of you at the helm? Do you regret any decisions made, or are there things you’d do differently?
No, we do things together, sometimes one starts, the other finishes. It works as a perfect hobby. We enjoy creating things together without even thinking. We mainly make every piece ourselves, with our hands. So decisions are made while making. No time for regrets here. Our practice is weirdly made without any precise goal, so we can’t regret anything.
Can you walk us through your process and how you work together? Who does what?
There is no rule. Sometimes we discuss things or sometimes we don’t. We have ideas together and separately but everything is made together at one point. Either totally together, from thinking about sourcing materials, purchasing supplies, and creating/making things, or separately: one starts and the other finishes. The randomness of the process makes us happy.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start their own fashion company?
To be honest, it would be crazy to start a fashion company nowadays wanting to make a living out of it. Kezako for us is a proper hobby, nothing is made to be a commercial product. Our process is closer to art than fashion, even if we don’t think of ourselves as artists. But the way we are producing items is based on one-of-a-kind objects to be shown as fashion imagery. Nothing else. That being said, we are open to selling the items at a price we would randomly decide…
Your work is so colourful, in the many senses of the word. What are the visual references you are working with?
Colours have been attracting both of us since forever, even though we had a totally different childhood, cultural influences, and family stories. Painter Robert Combas is our forever obsession. But so are the crazy attires we see on the street or French movies from the 1990’s. Colours are a way of expression as well.
Would you say you find inspiration in unlikely places?
We are finding inspiration in the most random things, but the weak, wonky, crazy, under drugs, weird mixes, weird people always catch our eyes and we have an attraction for the non-conformist people, objects, opinions in general.
Sustainability and fashion: oxymoron or happy marriage?
Sustainability has never been a concept behind Kezako. It came as a natural label, as we repurpose things, and we produce a really small amount of objects. But that was more a way to express ourselves without engineering or sewing techniques and assistance from other companies or suppliers.
How thin is the line that separates sustainability and greenwashing?
To be honest our paycheck jobs are based on producing or promoting things we don’t actually need so it would be hypocritical to criticize our system here.
How do you see the future of up-cycling within the industry? Do you have a hard time when it comes to production? What is your system?
We don’t produce, so we don’t have any of these problems!
What’s next for your brand? What are some of its long-term goals?
Maybe a fashion show.
What does “fake fashion” mean for you? What makes it an interesting practice?
In our case, just creating entertainment, first for ourselves and for the last year or two for a larger public.
What is the relationship between fake fashion and the current moment, when everything seems to be fake? (Fake news, Deepfakes, fake ecology/green-washing)
Who decides what is real and what is fake? Fakes are real too 🙂