Clément Taverniti isn't your average 24-year-old. The French designer launched his brand STILL GOOD in 2010 as a line of T-shirts, before branching out into a full-on collection this past fall. There are plenty of awesome French brands killing it right now, and STILL GOOD is one up-and-coming label worth paying attention to. Taverniti cut his teeth working under designer Dries Van Noten, and then learned the basics of good branding and marketing from Masaya Kuroki, creative director of luxury clothing line Kitsuné.
The result is a brand that offers European-made gear sourced from the finest Italian and Japanese fabrics. But Taverniti also hopes to express his appreciation for the art world through his clothes too. His recently launched Le Mur Blanc project hopes to find and highlight new talent. We took some time to chat with him about STILL GOOD, Dries Van Noten, and what it takes to have a great brand.
Clothing seems to be the family business. Your brother works in the denim industry. And your dad, Jimmy Taverniti has been in business since the ‘80s. In fact the name STILL GOOD is derived from one of his ad campaigns, correct?
Yes that’s right , actually my father launched his own brand during the ‘80s in the south of France.
Where in France are you from originally?
Toulouse South of France, Toulouse in a small city. But gradually when I studied fashion I really wanted to create my own stuff.
You started out with tee shirt brand, right? And you won a contest?
Yeah I wont a contest—it was in 2010. I started thinking about launching my own brand when I moved to Paris to study fashion, and I was planning to work in fashion.
Which fashion school did you go to?
Yes, I went to Esmod. Like I said, I was planning to work in fashion.
And then you found a job with Dries Van Noten?
I love Dries Van Noten's idea of mixing fabrics. I really want to do that, but more affordable.
Yes, I was working for the design team in Belgium, because they have the head office there. That was one year. And then I decided to come back to Paris. I was still working for Dries but at the communication and press office.
While in Belgium, did you learn a lot about design and things like fabrication and production?
Oh yes, it was really amazing, I think it was the best experience I had in my life.
Dries is known for these patterns and like crazy materials, like their new collection has shirts that are a mixture of silk texture and camouflage. Did that inspire STILL GOOD?
I’ve been inspired by Dries a lot, I have to say that. I love his idea of mixing fabrics. I really want to do that also, but more affordable. I wanted to make a brand that was easy to wear, but be able to show that it’s still good as a designer brand.
Gradually I want to do that but I really, I really learned from the Dries van Noten work. I was working with a big team, only passionate people, it was crazy and, so yes I’vebeen very inspired by him.
Did you get to work with Dries directly?
Actually, yes. He was there every day in the office. I was working with the design team, and he was the boss of that team, so yeah I was working with him like every day.
That’s like working with your idol.
Yeah, it was.
So did you learn about like doing factories and sourcing stuff?
Yes, we were finding the fabrics he wanted, and it was interesting because we could come up with some ideas and offer them to him. That was very exciting.