The Belgian designer Martin Margiela, whose clever PR strategy became never to appear in public, founded the fashion brand Maison Martin Margiela in 1988. The label became internationally known based on its unconventional designs and avant-garde fashion creations, which soon elevated it to an insider tip status.
Margiela describes the philosophy of his label simply as "the only important thing for us is fashion."
Even the label in the collection pieces is a simple, white cotton tab. The labels show only numbers from 0 to 23, the encircled number represents a specific collection by MM Paris. A "10" therefore stands for the men's collection, the collection line "14" for men's garments was added later – predominantly timeless and classic cuts that are not governed by seasonal trends. The labels are attached to the inside of the garment using four basting stitches, which means that a crossed thread is visible on the outside of unlined items. Margiela's initial idea was that customers would cut out the label at home. The understated label stitching has since become something of a secret code for fashionistas.
MM fashion is revolutionary, surprising, rich in contrast – simply different. Even after the designer stepped back and the label was taken over by the Diesel Group in 2009, the eclectic avant-garde touch still remains in every new collection. That style, however, now represents modern and wearable men's fashion – from suits to basic shirts. The spirit of Margiela is still very much alive in the label's many concepts and themes.
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