Highsnobiety / Eva Al Desnudo

Business of Fashion has profiled Hood By Air founder Shayne Oliver as the designer gears up to relaunch his brand with a new business partner.

Since Hood By Air went on indefinite hiatus in 2017, Oliver has kept himself busy by working with Helmut Lang as a guest designer for SS18; collaborating on Diesel’s Red Tag project; and designing some impressive four-armed outerwear pieces with Italian label Colmar.

You can read some of Oliver’s thoughts on the rise and fall of his brand and the pitfalls of the American fashion industry below. Be sure to head over to BoF to read the full interview, which features contributions from Virgil Abloh and more.

On New Guards Group’s relationship with HBA, which only lasted one year

“The right foundation on our end wasn’t in place to move the conversation forward.

“There were a lot of unanswered questions of how people were going to be involved. I was going to be taken care of, and the design team was going to be taken care of. But how was everyone else going to be taken care of? It had to do with egos.”

On his reputation for being difficult to work with

“People think they can’t tame me and I have this very rebellious attitude because I challenge things, but I’m not sitting here rioting. That was a point of, ’Oh, well, he lives the lifestyle. Maybe we can’t tame that and bring that in.’”

On Industry Award Shows

“[Don’t] just throw them a prize and say, ‘Oh, we did our duty,’ and then put them in touch with CEOs that don’t even want to have conversations with them.

“Here, there is such a divide between the corporate side and the [creative] side” of the industry. In Europe, the top editor will be at Craig Green’s first show, but we have to wait four years to get that reaction. This is why we don’t have stars.”

The future of HBA

“I always seemed like I was having fun, but I really wasn’t; I was trying hard to be taken seriously. Now I’m actually wanting to have fun and push the luxury aspect of what I’m doing.”

Words by Max Grobe
Associate Fashion Editor