William Tempest is not well-known here yet. The young British designer just launched his first limited-edition of swimwear for man and women in collaboration with the W Hotel. Since he founded his brand in 2009, Tempest has become of big name in fashion thanks to his unique prints and surprising cuts. Celebrities including Kate Moss, Rihanna, Victoria Beckham and Emma Watson have worn his models in the past few years. Good2b interviewed him during his visit to Barcelona.
You’ve just launched a swimwear line exclusively for the W Hotel. This isn’t the first time you work with them. A few months ago you designed pajamas for W London. Do you think the clothes you design define each city?
Yes, London is definitely a ‘pajamas’ city. In that case, the pieces were inspired by British tailoring and costumes people wear to work every day. Besides, the hotel is in Soho, which I think fits very well with this theme. Instead, W Barcelona is on the beach and has its own terrace, so swimwear is definitely for it, as well as for Amsterdam, don’t ask me why!
What inspired you to make the Barcelona collection?
I had been in the city before and back then I knew we were going to work together, so I studied the hotel a lot and the surrounding area. I picked the colors of the beach and that’s how I made the print. I think if you see the result is fairly well understood.
What is the next garment you imagine designing for this line?
The truth is that, more than another garment, I’d like to interpret it with different prints and colors the city suggest. What we really want is to keep making swimsuits and switch the pattern depending on the city.
When you started working with the W hotel you were little known. Now you have a name on the international stage. Do you think such partnerships propel the career of an artist?
I’m 29 years old and I established my brand when I was 21. Of course, since I started this collaboration my name is heard more often. On the other hand, I like partnerships, and if it’s with a firm that supports art and design, even better.
You’re very young, but famous people such as Rihanna or Kate Moss wear your designs. Who would you like to add to the list?
Angelina Jolie and Kendall Jenner are on my list. Kate Moss in definitely one of my favourites.
You’ve just moved to New York. How do you imagine yourself in the near future?
I hope I’ll be growing up as I’ve been doing up until know. I’d like to show my work at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in London and I’d also like to move for a while to Los Angeles. There’s interesting things happening there…
As far as fashion is concerned, what’s the difference between London and New York?
The style is different. London is a much more individualistic city full of talent. New York is more global; people’s style is very similar. It’s generally more hipster and less avant-garde.
Your favourite hotspots in London are…
Shad Thames, a small street near the river with warehouse and many restaurants. It’s right next to Tower Bridge. I also like Shoreditch and Daston, where everything is happening right now.
The mankini, Borat’s swim suit
You never thought you’d end up…
I’ve never done anything I hadn’t thought about before. My career is a natural progression from my acts.