Photos via I and Me
I and Me, a new clothing line developed by former Topshop Denim buyer Jessica Gebhart in London, caught my eye for several reasons—first and foremost because the inaugural SS16 collection is “driven by an off-season aesthetic,” which is basically the aesthetic of my life, living in a foggy Northern California beach town.
With pieces for both men and women, it pays homage to “towns that hibernate when the sun doesn’t shine, with a particular focus on when the crowds don’t flock and few remain, in quiet stasis waiting on the sunshine to return,” according to the press release announcing I and Me’s launch. This brings to mind warm fires, misty ocean views and bundled-up walks on the beach—and makes me want to buy everything.
Another reason: that hat! Not to mention the other wardrobe staples in the collection, including rusted blue washed Japanese selvedge denim and pieces crafted from textured indigo Italian jersey fabric.
The collection also includes a five-piece ceramics range, “designed to further evoke a weatherworn, seascape palette through a washed out white glaze and multi-textured surface.”
Nothing not to like here! I wanted to know more about what inspired the collection, how Gebhart came up with the name (cool story involving Bjork), and what her plans are for the future. Read our interview below!
1. What was the inspiration behind I and Me? And how did you come up with the name?
“I’ve dreamt of running a fashion line ever since I was a kid. Having worked in the fashion industry for 10 years and after leaving Topshop as the denim buyer last year, I felt like it was the right time to start out under my own name.
My background is in denim so this will always be represented in some form each season, but for me, it’s way more exciting to offer a fuller, more comprehensive package. I AND ME is a multidisciplinary lifestyle brand and it’s really important to me to keep that multi-product element running. I am really enjoying the challenge of combining functional wardrobe staples for both men and women, with layered statement clothing pieces, and homeware collections to complete the brands vision. I want the customers to be inspired to build a personal collection of favourite staples and objects from I AND ME, almost like a collaboration with each and every I AND ME fan.
The inspiration behind the name I AND ME comes from when I visited Stockholm in 2012. I was at a Björk concert, when I chanced upon a double page spread reading ‘JAG’ in the festival magazine (which is my initials and quite often my nickname). Researching further into what JAG meant in Swedish, it translated as ‘ I and / or ME,’ and from that very day my brand name was born. This magazine spread is actually framed and up on the wall in my house as a reminder of what the backbone of the brand means.”
2. When will the clothing be available for purchase?
“The first I AND ME SS16 collection will be available to purchase in January from www.i-and-me.com.”
3. Who are some of your role models… designers or anyone else you find inspiring?
“More often than not, I find my inspiration in the everyday. From the men and women walking past my studio window, to the people I see going about their business while on inspiration trips around the globe. It’s the little details; the way someone might be wearing their jeans rolled like that, or the stacks of earrings in their ears. Simple and subtle is often what excites me most.
I also love art and fall in love with reading about the histories of artists and designers. Finding a greater understanding of the way in which they lived their lives when they created their works is something I love to do. I can pin point certain muses though—Patti Smith and Anjelica Huston have both grown old incredibly gracefully and are endlessly inspiring to me.”
4. How often will you release collections?
“My collections will be released each main season with some little surprises in between.”