Belgian menswear fashion designer Raf Simons was born in 1968, initally studied Industrial Design, then self-trained in fashion, started in fashion design, and shows in Paris twice a year.
Founder: Raf Simons
Location: Antwerp, Belgium
About Raf Simons
Influenced by the austere style of tailored menswear with youth street style, and known for his unique, modernist style, Raf Simons also cites musicians David Bowie, Kraftwerk and Joy Division as inspiring elements of his creative vision. Known for his unconventional early fashion shows, Raf Simons is also heralded as one of the important innovators in contemporary menswear by the international press.
In 2000, Raf Simons shut down his company after feeling restricted by the business side of the company, due to the growing success of the brand, and stated he was quitting fashion. After being approached by Belgian manufacturers, Gysemans Clothing Industry, he relaunched his label in 2001 with a smaller team.
In 2005, Raf by Raf Simons, his diffusion line was launched. Additionally he was appointed the creative director of Jil Sander and is credited with restoring the integrity of the Jil Sander by realigning the brand with the purist values of the founder.
The Raf Simons brand has ongoing collaborations on accessories with Linda Farrow, and has collaborated on a seasonal collection with sportswear brand Fred Perry in 2008. Raf Simons also followed on from designer Eley Kishimoto, by collaborating with Eastpak on a range of bags and backpacks.
Raf Simons won the Wallpaper* Design Award for Best New Men’s Fashion Collection in 2010, chosen for ‘challenging menswear conventions for pieces that were both classic and revolutionary.’
Raf Simons has two stand-alone stores in Tokyo and Osaka, in Japan, and is stocked in a variety of locations all over the world, including online retailers Oki-Ni and The Corner.