London based fashion label, Tourne de Transmission (TDT) name literally translates into rotating transmission. The brand’s signature aesthetic combines words with strong imagery in order to generate a hidden message. We sat down with TDT creator, Graeme Gaughan, to explore more about the brand, his inspiration, and future projects.
See the collection at Capsule Paris January 18-20, 2013.
Tell us about TDT. When was it launched and who is behind the brand? Tell us about your artistic background as well.
TDT started as a creative outlet for me to experiment with prints on garments. I had been designing T-shirts for both bands and other brands on a freelance basis over the past few years and it seemed like a natural progression. I didn’t envisage developing all the other sides to the apparel & accessories at the time of starting TDT, but as the prints developed I needed to bring new shapes into the collections. Retro newspaper layouts were also a big part of the brand’s early graphics. As the collections have developed, I have kept these roots throughout. The split boxes have now become part of the brand signature.
Tell us about the name? What does it signify ?
It’s a loose translation for rotating transmission, the idea of combining words and images to create statements, be it obvious or subliminal.
Where is the brand sold?
We have been working with some like minded and creative independent retailers such as Storm in CPH, Coggles in the UK and more recently Hypebeast which is pretty much the biggest shop window in the world for menswear. Hype Beast, in particular, had been very successful for us with styles selling out pretty quickly.
You’re a PR person by day. How has your day job helped you in launching the brand?
The three main things that have helped are obviously a good idea of how to position the brand and who to speak to in all the key areas such press & buyers. Also,seeing what works for other brands/clients and learning from that. And most importantly, knowledge of supporting key stockists and coming up with creative concepts to keep the brand in the media to support sell through.
What are some of the signature items in the collection?
The classic split box prints are the first tees released and will always be a part of the collection. Our all over printed sweats, shirts and pants have become really popular as have the TDT sneakers that we developed with Swear & Six London.
What’s inspiring you for AW13?
AW13 started with a book I read on a rare holiday back in May… People of the Abyss, by Jack London which was written in 1903 about the area where I now live and work. The book gives a detailed account of living in the slums of East London during the later stages of the industrial revolution. Globalization along with poverty and the effects of concentrated power have been a point of reference. From there I started to look at the patterns within Victorian architecture and how that period of growth mirrors the current techno revolution… There are quite a lot of interesting and also disturbing parallels.
You recently launched shoes- how’s it going?
The ss13 two styles were really well received so we have developed this high and low top style with 8 more options for AW13. I have been a sneaker/shoe nut for years and have an embarrassing number in my collection. I can’t bring myself to throw them away. For Aw13 its really about building the profile on these styles so they become a TDT mainstay. From there I am hoping to develop some newer styles for SS14.
What’s next for the brand?
I have actually made less jersey options for AW13 and brought in leathers, blazers and a bit of outwear to balance the collection. I also think buyers find it easier to buy into a collection with a solid number of options across a slightly broader range of products. We will also have leather backpacks and accessories to compliment the footwear.
We will be showing at Capsule Paris for the first time as well – which is exciting. We have traditionally done private showrooms, but I think the rails of product speak for itself and attracts people through the graphics. So doing a show like Capsule and putting the product in front of many more people should be good for TDT.