Michael Bastian Prefers an Imperfect, Beefy Model

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Photo: Ryan McCune/PatrickMcMullan.com

Menswear designer Michael Bastian isn’t showing his own line this season — he’s still in the midst of regaining control of it from Italian manufacturer Brunello Cucinelli — but fortunately for fans of his lightly twisted takes on the preppy-sporty genre, his designs for Gant (which earned him a GQ Menswear Designer of the Year nomination) will be on the runway Saturday. Bastian sat down for some questions in his new workspace, underneath a giant black-and-white Jean-Paul Goude portrait of Grace Jones.

So did you ever have a show with Bill Blass?
No. A few samples were made. I was brought on as men’s creative director to relaunch Bill Blass as a true designer label. Peter Som was on the women’s side and I was on the men’s. We had two collections designed, laid out, fabric picked, had a spot on the calendar, and at the last minute the plug was pulled. That happened two times. Slowly a lot of those ideas have found their way into one collection or another. The one thing that saw the light of day was a fragrance, Mr. Blass. They liquidated it on eBay and you can find it there for about $11.