Shopbop were lucky enough to get an interview with the lovely designers Emily Current and Meritt Elliott, the designers and founders of Current/Elliott. To shop the Current/Elliott collection, click here. To read the history of the brand, click here.
We’ve read that you’re both big fans of vintage jeans, and that you launched Current/Elliott (in part) to recreate your favorite styles from the past. But clearly your line is much more than a trip down (denim) memory lane: how do you find that balance of innovation and nostalgia in your designs?
The wonderful part about vintage is that it is absolutely limitless! We always look to history for inspiration, but challenge ourselves to make everything relevant, comfortable, and flattering. We rely on our fashion instinct to understand what proportions, fabrics, and details are needed in the marketplace and then magic!…our favorite pieces!
Your label can be credited with bringing the boyfriend jean to prominence. When did you start to understand you had a huge hit on your hands? Why do you think women responded so strongly to this new silhouette?
We have been wearing the boyfriend jean for as long as we can remember! We love it! A looser, more relaxed fit always has a home in every woman’s closet: it is a timeless denim must-have. We think everyone was craving this easy, worn silhouette as a departure from a sea of tight, dark denim. It perfectly complements the kind of tops and shoes women are loving right now.
Unlike the va-va-voom appeal of a painted-on skinny, your styles have more of an unstudied sexiness. Did you set out to change the direction of denim with your relaxed, boyish fits?
We just knew it didn’t exist! We think sexy IS effortlessness. Denim is best when it’s comfortable and worn with ease. Our fits are inspired by vintage and menswear bodies, mixed with our secret design methods that make women look and feel fantastic.
What role do your styling backgrounds play in the design process?
Styling affects how we design every day. Firstly, we know what is missing and needed in the marketplace. Secondly, because we have tailored and tricked-out clothes for so many years, we have a jumpstart on how to flatter and fit. Finally, we consider how things should be styled from the get-go. We incorporate how the piece should be worn from the very first sketch.
Is designing a collaborative process for you two, or do you each go to your respective corners (so to speak) and come back with ideas for pieces? How do you decide which pieces make it into the final collection?
It’s absolutely collaborative. We have worked together all day every day for over ten years. We finish each other’s sentences. It’s also an instinct, a lot of risk-taking, and a ridiculous love affair with fashion.
You never fail to surprise us with some new style we can’t believe we lived without. Can you give us any hints about what’s coming next from Current/Elliott?
Thank you! While we can’t give away any of our surprises, we can promise to introduce some new silhouettes, fabrics, and fits that are to die for. We just can’t stop! Our denim obsession is insatiable!