In conversation with Damur
Freedom and Creativity, the two forces driving talented Damur Huang’s vision. We get to know the designer, the brand, and their evolution
– Hi Damur, tell us about your story and how you decided to approach fashion and creativity in general.
I wanted to be a musician. I played the French horn in an orchestra when I was young. There was one moment when I also wanted to be a programmer. To be honest, I want to be lawyer now, but I think I am pretty good in creativity and fashion is the one that chose me, not the other way around, haha. The most important, I like being surrounded by creative people because they make our life funnier and more playful.
– How do your Asian origins influence your vision of fashion, and how do they match with the Western market taste?
“I have been living in Europe since 2007. I believe that the country one is born in does not determine who you actually are. We are all human beings, and as such, we do not grow or shape our personality in one place only. #DAMUR proves this to be true, as our designs cannot be classified in one category only, but rather are created and inspired by the Berlin city, which represents the freedom of expression and the courage to break through limits. And yes, there is a thing called a Rice Burger today.
– What are the challenges that a young, emerging designer has to face nowadays in order to keep his business going, in terms of budget, consumer’s request, search for sustainable materials, and so on?
As a young brand we have no limitation to be as bold as creative as we want. Big brands like Gucci or LV do not have the same freedom of expression as DAMUR has. In the same time, we are frustrated when we see that the media or the customers only choose the brand to show their status. Pretty boring, right?
– What are the main elements that mark out Damur as a brand? What’s the Company philosophy behind this project?
The DAMUR hashtag is our signature element, which is not only a symbol for dialing a number on the phone, but also the symbol that represents the millennial generation. You see, I am pretty sure that there is someone out there who does not know about LV & GUCCI, but they will always know the hashtag symbol.
– Every new collection is represented by different hashtags: what do they represent in your vision?
The topic people do not dare to talk about. I mean to talk about it brutally and expressively, not keeping yourself in the nice dance only. I think #DAMUR is all about a safe zone in which you can freely express whatever you want to say. Do you still think the Internet is a free space today? I think fashion is the last free place to me in the current state of the world.
– The approach you are showing towards fashion looks really gender-fluid: is this a permanent feature of your style, or are you planning to expand your production into specific womenswear and menswear lines?
I don’t want to say it’s a permanent feature, but I do want to complain that most of menswears in the current market now is rather boring to me and I often find the womenswear designs able to excite me a lot more, so it is really a matter of your own perspective and preferences.
– Can you describe us the key elements of your AW19-20 collection?
Our AW19/20 collection is centered around the game between cuts – materials, men – women, and everything in between. Our designing process is a continuous flow of inspiration, learning and consistency. We again play with denim fabric which has different texture materials, stripes, styles and definition of garments. The design of each collection is meant to motivate our customers to be more confident in looking unconventional, and most importantly, more naughty and elegant all at once.
– In the last few seasons Damur has been growing very fast, gaining acknowledgement on an international level: after the award received by Premium Exhibition, what are your next projects and steps in order to promote the brand and give further exposure to your SS/2020 collection? Can we have a sneak peek of it (how it is evolving, similarities and differences with previous collections, etc.)?
As we all know, rumors about the Berlin Fashion Week lagging behind the fashion shows in other metropoles are real, and more and more people lose interest in coming to it. That is why we are planning to involve more people and more organisations in our first Runway show with the aim of doing something special and prove that Berlin Fashion Week can be fun and authentic. Our coming-soon collection is planned to be a blockbuster, as it challenges the most sensitive topic of all, racism. We believe that everybody is racist to some extent, and the sooner the society will acknowledge this, the higher will be the probability of doing something about it.
– A big event is coming soon at Berlin Fashion Week: how are you going to develop the project of your first fashion show? Will it be a standard runway, or something different?
Ha ha, I do not think you can find anything standard or common when you think about #DAMUR. Standardization is against our ideology and brand philosophy, and the question we want to address this time is: are Berliners welcome to attend Berlin Fashion week? Stay tuned with #DAMUR: prudes, sluts, blacks, whites, and aliens are all welcome.
– Let’s talk about your communication strategy: hashtags are playing a key role in it, so we presume that social media and the millennial consumer target are very important to you…
We will never restrict ourselves to one target only because we design for everybody who is looking for fun and excitement in life. Yes, we believe that social media platforms are the important channels for us to engage with the #DAMUR message, but we also think we can talk to our target in person too. For example, have you ever seen our #FUCKANDGO OR #IAMSLUT stickers on the streets? You cannot imagine how fast the stickers ran out. The question is not about how many Instagram posts you are planning to post per week; it is more about integrating our brand and engaging with your audiences in real life, you know, that life moment in which you are wearing your pijama and have waken up with fuzzy hair.
– What are the markets/countries in which Damur brand is currently stronger?
We have secured a strong position in Germany, France and China. However, We are currently working on embracing the Italian and the American markets too, because I think their inhabitants are funny enough to play bold and therefore, there is big potential for #DAMUR in these markets.
– Is there a particular topic that we have neglected and that you would like to talk about?
Yes, I want to really ask the society “why are we only talking about black & white today, and never talk about yellow or brown or any other color that signifies a certain race?” I cannot forget an article I read a few weeks ago about the power of minorities. Tyranny of the minority, this actually scares me too. But luckily, I will not get into any trouble if I say here today: #IAMBLACK.
follow them on IG at @damurfashion