HeraldScotland's newest fashion blogger - Gordon J Millar - speaks to Alan Moore, founder of luxury fashion brand ten30, about contemporary Scottish style, the creative industries and why being nice is important...
"Design has to have meaning. Without meaning or story, a product is shallow, with small appeal and short life span. ten30 design tells a story, it has depth, it is timeless."- Alan Moore, ten30.
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On a glorious evening in Glasgow, I had the joy of attending the opening reception of the Gentleman's Emporium For Luxury Goods pop-up boutique.
The brainchild of Alan Moore - ten30 founder, director, designer - the store featured some of the best new Scottish luxury brands; Catherine Aitken Boutique, Kennett and Buchanan Bespoke, all housed in one of Glasgow's most decadent shopping malls, Princes Square.
Alan said: "The idea was to open a pop-up that was completely different to what has been done before in Glasgow. There is a great emerging luxury fashion scene in Scotland, with a real focus on unrivaled raw materials and true artisanal craftsmanship, which needs to be highlighted. I wanted the shop to be traditional yet contemporary and to be executed to the highest standard, to help cement a new reputation of a hard working, tasteful, modern Scottish society, with an appreciation for luxury and an awareness of contemporary high fashion."
The guests were warmly greeted with a dram and a smile, in splendid surroundings, with an air of excitement and awe at the craftsmanship on display.
"The event went well, it was a roaring success for everyone involved. For my brand, ten30, I was keen to get sales (which we did) but I was also keen to meet new customers, explain the brand to them and give people the opportunity to see our garments. The customers could feel the quality of the Harris tweed cloth that we use, and see, in detail, how well our garments are made. It was a fantastic opportunity to show people how transparent we are, explaining our sourcing and manufacturing processes, something that people seemed to really appreciate. The reaction post event has been equally successful, it has raised brand awareness and instilled a lot of confidence in new customers."
Mr. Moore is the definition of dapper, and I asked him to describe his own personal style:
"My style is ever evolving and can change from day to day. I enjoy quality in clothes and make sure whatever I purchase is high quality, and not 'on trend'. I tend to go for basics and use details to put my own stamp on the look, usually a vintage silk handkerchief or tie pin. A white shirt is an absolute must for me, it's the one thing I will buy over and over again. I like to dress well and and take care of how I look, I am obsessive about polishing shoes and really enjoy doing it. I think a gentleman's style should look effortless, I hate matching and over thinking or trying too hard with an outfit, the Italians sum it up perfectly with the phrase 'Sprezzatura' - which is loosely defined as 'a certain nonchalance, so as to conceal all art and make whatever one does or say appear to be without effort and without any thought about it'."
Alan and I wholeheartedly agree that this year, more than any other, we are in a very strong position to define what it really means to be a Scottish creative in the 21st century, and it's a hugely exciting time for us to take the lead and place Glasgow firmly in the same breath as Berlin, New York, Milan, and London.
With this in mind, I asked him what message he had for emerging creatives across the land.
"Work hard and don't give up. The creative industries are tough and unpredictable, and you're always 'on'. You will get told no plenty of times, and things won't work out, but you have to have the passion and the determination to keep going in the face of adversity and despite what the naysayers think. It is worth it! Believe in something. I believe in myself and I trust my instincts, I trust that the decisions I make are the right ones, and I am confident that I know what I'm doing, and why I'm doing it. I've made a lot of mistakes, but it's important to make mistakes, to learn from them and know not to make the same mistakes again. Be nice. You are the brand, you represent your work every day, you are an example of your work. That includes how you dress, your time-keeping, your politeness and your personality. You will meet a lot of people along the way, some you will fall in love with, some will fall in love with you, but not everyone will and it's important to always be yourself and never pretend to be something or someone you're not, just to please others. Above all, have fun: working in a creative environment will take you on a fantastic journey and you will experience things you had never imagined. You will meet the most interesting people and you will inspire others."