Fashion is a conduit of style, but it is not style itself; for, style comes from within the authentic human being who is wearing the clothes, not the eye of the beholder. Consequently, we wear the clothes. The clothes do not wear us. And when we wear the clothes, it matters what not what others think. It matters how we feel. These simplistic truths capture the essence of a few candid reasons we appreciate, Wayne Sørensen, the former design director for Orlebar Brown and the creative innovator behind the clothing brand, Sørensen.
As opposed to basing his clothing line on trends and inflated hype based on the aesthetic at all costs, Sørensen intentionally developed a fashion architect centered around feeling your best and looking your best in your natural environment. The work ethic of 6 core archetypes to start, laid the foundational bricks of style for this brand. These Archetypes are the Driver, Engineer, Painter, Dancer, Officer and Butcher.
Brand architecht and fashion creative guru, Wayne Sørensen, himself, walks us through his ideas and inspiration behind this empowering fashion house. Read on to learn more about who Wayne Sørensen is, what the Sørensen movement is all about and how you, too, can access the power to dress in an uncomplicated, liberating, stylish and fearless way.
💜Love & Light🌞,
Cristen M. Mills
heART of cool: Describe your background. What was your childhood like?
Wayne Sorensen: I was the youngest of five children so it was always a busy household. Lots of sports, church, friends and family.
HoC: Who are you? What is your purpose on the planet?
WS: Some of my earliest memories were of being with Mum in the family sewing room – wrecking havoc with the fabric in the cupboards and impatient to make things. I knew from a very early age that designing clothing that made people feel better about themselves and the world around them was my purpose.
HoC: What inspired you to be a creative director?
WS: I’m not big on job titles. If having a vision to design not only product but also the environment for them, then I guess that is what be known as a creative director.
HoC: Why did you desire to be the creative director of Sørensen?
WS: When you found a brand you have to do everything. A lot of the creative vision is now cast and the focus shifts to sales, production, marketing and finance. Fortunately I have a strong background in these areas too. I enjoy those moments where I get to focus back on the creative as that is what fuels the other areas.
HoC: It looks like you put a lot of thought into the philosophy of the brand. How would you describe the philosophy of your brand and what process did you go through to create that philosophy?
WS: Thank you. For me, the last thing that the world needed was yet another fashion brand. The starting point was the simple observation that most men, and a lot of women too, have little to no interest in fashion or trends yet still want to know that they look good. Reconnecting these people with the delight of dressing to their own sense of style is our vision.
HoC: How did you go about selecting the 6 archetypes of the brand (BUTCHER, DANCER, DRIVER, ENGINEER, OFFICER, PAINTER) to capture the essence and style of Sørensen?
WS: The initial six archetypes rose naturally to the top of a long list after a lot of research. Each bring a unique set of virtues and values that ultimately create a rounded offering. Our three key words are QUIET, PRECISE and CONFIDENT and as different as the six archetypes are, they all uniquely personify these core values.
HoC: What role does authenticity play in your work?
WS: Authenticity is everything. We are living in an increasingly inauthentic world – virtual this, digital that. I’m proud of the integrity of every aspect of what we’re doing – from being in the London store ourselves to meet our customers to the personal relationships we have with our makers in Portugal.
HoC: How do you define Art? What role does Art play in the evolution of you as a human being?
WS: Good question. Art for me is anything that is uniquely created that stirs us on the inside and provokes dialogue. I actually don’t engage with the art around me enough – especially living partly in London.
HoC: What does success look like for Sørensen?
WS: Success is that moment a customer discovers a piece from the collection and something within them comes alive.
HoC: How do you qualify success in your life in general?
WS: Success for me is working out why you’re here and making that happen.
HoC: What Artists inspire you the most now and why?
WS: David Hockney is in his own league for me. His pool series – the light, the color, the lifestyle.
Jeff Koons Gazing Ball series also struck a chord; that simple splash of unexpected is something I love to apply to my own work.
Pierre Koenig’s architectural work too. The line, use of materials and creation of space. I was fortunate to spend time in the Stahl House last year. I threatened to change the locks.
HoC: What advice can you give aspiring creative directors?
WS: Fear invariably holds most of us back from realizing our dreams. Work that fear through, find your point of difference and go for it.
HoC: If you could change one thing on this planet, what would it be and how would you dare to change it?
WS: My Dad always talks about people having short memories. I fear we’re on the brink of repeating mistakes that history has shown us don’t work. Fear is driving a lot of the changes we’re seeing. We can only change ourselves, so in whatever way I can, I try and spread the opposite of fear as I go about my own daily life. It’s all we can do.
HoC: What is love and how does it shape your life?
WS: The best definition of love I’ve ever come across; Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
HoC: What is the meaning of life?
WS: To love. Love others and yourself. Love what you do and love the world around us.
HoC: What should we expect from you next?
WS: A postcard from Portugal next month.
HoC: What is the heART of cool to you?
WS: Standing in a crowd and speaking with a unique voice.