Fashion designer Dejan Despotović born in Bosnia and raised in Serbia launched his namesake label at the age of 23. He attended the High Textile School in Belgrade from 2001 to 2005, where he designed for different public events like hair, television and school shows. In 2003, Dejan Despotović was awarded the Silver Doe Award at the Belgrade Fashion Fair.
I started really as a young boy. I loved seeing how people were dressed, because I was always asking myself, how did he or she came up with the idea of putting that together. I started creating sketches on how I would like to see people being dressed, and it just happened. I started loving it more and more, and now I live for fashion design.
The designer continued his studies at the College for Design, Textile and Management in Belgrade at the Textile and Clothing Design Department in 2005. After his first fashion shows presented at Belgrade Fashion Week and Berlin Fashion Week, Dejan was immediately spotted and recognized by the fashion scene in 2006. This lead to two consecutive nominations for the best young designer at Pantene Beauty Awards in 2006 and 2007, first prize at the Nokia Awards competition for young designers at Fashion Selection, and winning the Black & White competition at the opening of Belgrade Fashion Week in 2007.
I really love the freedom of thinking, and how people admire your vision and the presentation of your imagination.
BLACK’D woman is a strong woman, who wants to look different, even if she only wears a very simple shaped dress, which has strong details. There are no age boundaries, it can be a teenage girl or a business woman. The clothes are different and a bit strong, but each item can be separately combined with something else and make the combination very chic and wearable. BLACK’D woman should feel good knowing that everybody will look at her at least twice.
Dejan Despotović worked as a stylist for the Serbian edition of Elle magazine in 2008. In the same year, he moved to London to continue his education, where the designer interned for the famous fashion houses like Biba and Gareth Pugh. He decided to expand his growing business by launching his second line BLACK by Dejan Despotović in 2010 and opened his first store in Belgrade in 2011. Dejan became an important figure in the Serbian fashion scene that resulted in the styling of Serbia’s biggest celebrities and doing editorials for several online fashion publications.
The brand’s style is dark and strong, but on the other side it’s very feminine and chic, if I can say. I really go for femininity by trying to make clothes that are very dreamy and dark, but also chic and ready to wear.
After a few years of managing different projects, he decided to start fresh and moved to New York City in 2012. While working on his own collection, he spend some time at Oscar de la Renta and Brandon Sun design studios, he also worked as the head designer at KAIMIN and did consulting for Sheena Trivedi. In the fall of 2013, Dejan took the next step in his fashion career by launching his third label under the name BLACK’D. The fashion icons including Brandon Maxwell and Lady Gaga, among others who wore his creations from the new brand.
The collection was inspired by the melancholic, elegant, and mysterious world of my imagination that came from listing to experimental classical music. The Spring/Summer 2015 collection was created in a familiar spirit, but with a different approach to mixing fabrics.
The BLACK’D trademark “arrow” style was transformed to another level by creating and applying the leather patches on the mesh, which created a juxtaposition of stiffness and movement. The mixture of wool/silk, cotton, mesh and leather lead to a highly distinctive gothic elegance that is notably present in every BLACK’D collection.
The details are definitely very strong with cut outs and patched leather stripes throughout the whole collection. The “ARROW” details I like to use very often, and that’s the key detail of the collection in Ready to Wear as well as in Accessories. The look is very tall, slim and a strong chic woman who is ready to be transformed into a warrior, if there is a need for it. She is a very mystical and elegant creature, queen of the dark (but not the evil one).
Every collection starts with ideas, and I love to over think about something that makes me happy and comfortable in my own body. I really like to listen to a lot of music, experimental classical music and composers such as Max Richter, Yann Tiersen, Philip Glass and etc. They make me feel lost in some other world, where I can really imagine all the movement of fabrics and mood of the collection, especially in the dark.
BLACK’D label, based in New York, aims for strong ideas combined with dark and elegant imagination. Recently, Dejan Despotović introduced a new collection of garments and accessories. The starting point of the lineup was the designer’s imaginary and mysterious world that was influenced by experimental classic music. In the Spring/Summer 2015 collection, Dejan experimented with fabrics by mixing them. The BLACK’D signature “arrow” got a transformation into leather patches applied on the mesh fabric to create an amalgamation of movement and stiffness.
For me, it’s very important to imagine everything, and stay awake for the whole night, if it’s necessary. This is time, when I am starting with forms and pattern discussion with myself. I like everything to be connected on the garment, so I spend a lot of time connecting lines on each silhouette.
Fabrics and trims are very important as well, because in the next stage (choosing fabrics), I really do change a lot in the forms and details, but that’s how the creative process is like. After the fabrics, we are doing test fits and then garments in the final fabric.”
Dejan Despotović employed a mix of wool/silk, cotton, mesh and leather materials. For accessories, which were important elements in this season’s collection, the designer fused leather fringes and a mixture of glossy patent and matte leather with the trademark “arrow” detail on each bag. The vampire fangs with patent leather lips were cool and bold parts in the accessories offering. All of that created a special mood in the collection.
The accessories are an important aspect of the collection this season. The play of leather fringes added a special spirit to the collection as well as the mixture of glossy patent and matte leather with the signature “arrow” detail on each bag. The highlight of the accessories collection is the quirky detail of vampire fangs with patent leather lips.
BLACK’D exhibited dramatic, conceptual and edgy creations perfectly blended with Gothic components.
BLACK’D Spring/Summer 2015 Lookbook
Photographer: Marko Sovilj
Model: Marina Krtinic (Women Management Agency)
Dejan Portrait: Marko Sovilj
BLACK’D Accessories Spring/Summer 2015 Lookbook
Photos: Marko Sovilj
If you would like to know more about Dejan or his brand BLACK’D, feel free to visit the links below.