Combining luxury, exceptional design and rich history is the couture label, The Small Gatsby, from Vienna. Statement looks, high-quality fabrics and attention to detail give the brand an interesting edge in the industry. We recently were lucky enough to catch up with Teresa and Anita, the talented minds behind the brand.
The Small Gatbsy Team – Anita and Teresa centre
J.S: What’s your must-have piece from your current collection?
Teresa & Anita: The Bertie Blazer. A bright red velvet jersey dinner jacket. It’s the perfect match for jeans, a tutu, pantalon’s, cargos, any bottoms you name, boy or girl. It dresses up with the kind of casual elegance only a true statement piece can pull off. And you need attitude to wear such a piece. Most kids have plenty.
J.S: What was it like collaborating with the photographer, René Huemer for this collection?
T & A: Oh it was the kind of collaboration that covers it all: utmost quality, fun, trust, genius, adventure. We’ve shot our lookbook together, and then René joined us in Tokyo for a street shoot, between two US gigs with his usual rocker clientele. He is an appraised portrait photographer of this world’s greatest rock stars and jazz legends. The Stones, Depeche Mode, Leonard Cohen, Marylin Manson, BB King, etc. But René has never shot kids fashion before. There are so many firsts in a child’s life – we like this analogy- like to do something for the first time. Working with René on something new to him was brilliant. He was as excited as the kids, as we all were. What a great angle.
J.S: Where do you source your design inspiration?
T & A: In everyday life. It’s the things that stick out. The irritation in beauty. The beauty in the common. It’s everywhere if you take a moment to look closely…. And it creeps into your thoughts, again and again, from several perspectives and angles, once it has you, it’s persistent. And then we start drawing an image, a whole universe, with cloth, silhouette, the feeling when you wear it, the shades, details, how it moves with you, around you, where you wear it, how you wear it, it all starts to tell a story – and then we spin the story out, in images, in music, in artwork and mood. We collect the right people – weavers, knitters, kids, collaboration partners, photographers, graphic designers, movie makers, art consultants, printers, for each collection. We create a universe you can enwrap yourself with. To inspire you.
J.S: What is the most important element when you are designing clothing for children?
T & A: The statement: Kids are people. Their own species. They want to move, they want us to listen to them, they want to stand their own ground. We wish to respect this. To create garments, that are a statement: strong and sensual, mindful and genuine.
J.S: This year you presented your collection at Playtime Paris for the first time, how did you find the trade fair and the experience?
T & A: Oh it was brilliant. Everyone told us not to expect too much, that one will need to go there repeatedly to see results, and boom – we got them right away. It was the same at PlayTimeTokyo, and in Milan at Fashion Week. Everyone was lovely, helpful, excited, genuine, and we simply took the ride and opened a bottle of champagne each night. It seemed we were the only ones who actually brought a box!
J.S: What is the future of The Small Gatsby? Where do you see the brand in five years’ time?
T & A: TSG is an aspirational brand. And a Statement Brand. The story behind it is all about worthiness. We aim to be fully transparent, to create skin-worthy garments, to pass the generosity of a perfect piece of clothing on to everyone involved. On our platform aDeeperLuxury.com you find most of our partners, people who think likewise. We aim to play a leading role in this wonderful movement, that wants to put the worthiness back into fashion. That’s one half of the story. The other half is the story telling itself. The creation of universe after universe. They shall be collected, each season, each project, like books or movies or paintings, awaited, appraised. Creation is what we live for.
JS: Who are your style icons, both past and present?
Anita: Sarah Bernhardt. Tilda Swinton.
Teresa: Romy Schneider. Freddy Mercury. My girlfriend.
J.S: Just for fun, what book are you currently reading and what are you listening to right now?
T & A: We are suckers for fairy tales. Fantasy. Very dry and dark humour. Very good entertainment. The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Audio Book version. We’re both addicted.
And music: An artist called dePresno, the Song is ‘Souvenir.’ It’s the most recent song from the German singer-songwriter who has an amazing voice. It’s breathtaking.
A big thank you to Anita and Teresa for their time and such a wonderful interview.
Shop The Small Gatsby.
Preview The Small Gatsby Euer Gnaden AW16 video here.
Creation by Anita Dorner
Art Direction by Teresa Zimmermann
Photography by Isabelle Rindler – Belle & Sass
Artwork on garments by René Huemer
Creative direction by Dorner/Zimmermann