Tomas Maier (born 1957) is a German-born designer who is Creative Director at the Italian luxury lifestyle brand Bottega Veneta, which is part of Kering.Read about Tomas Maier in Wikipedia
Where I grew up, we spent a lot of time outside. I moved to Paris when I was 19, and from then on, it was exactly the opposite. On the weekend, you go to the galleries, the museums, the movies. And I thought, "I'm not going to be like all of these friends I've had who are now at this certain stage in their lives, and they are all unhappy with themselves because they never get out in the fresh air or the sun, and they get so disconnected from their bodies that they have to just layer and layer and layer like onions. I am not getting old like that. "
It's the ultimate for me not to see how it's made. I find it vulgar when you can distinguish how something is made. I used to be a student at the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture in Paris, and once I got to go to a Saint Laurent couture show. Everyone was always talking about how fabulous the tailoring was, but I was transfixed by this one particular dress. It was just a piece of fabric, but as the model was walking, you didn't know how she got into it, how it closed, where the seams were, and that, for me, was perfection. It stayed with me as a lifelong vision.
I'm making bags that don't even have a seam. But many people don't get that. They run through the showroom and go, "He did yellow bags this season. " That's fine. Not everything needs to be visible to everyone. But personally, that's what makes my work interesting to me. The whole fashion thing is not that interesting to me. The overall circus is not my universe.
I'm working for a woman, not a lady. What I hate the most is that "lady" talk. You know, when I read a review, "The lady wears a Bottega Veneta. . . . " What lady? It's the same girls who are walking the runway an hour later elsewhere. But probably it is just the sophistication in our material, the nuance of the color, or the quality of the makeup or the hair that make people think that way. Most people just don't understand simplicity.
I'm more European than anything. I've lived in America for 10 years, and I live in Florida because I like to be outdoors. I live a week in New York, and I live a week in Italy. When I'm here in Italy, I come to work at eight in the morning and usually I leave work at 10 o'clock at night. I don't even breathe the air. So that's why I like to live outside.
Andrew Preston and I moved to Florida, to get some air. Am I going to live there forever? No, I'm not. But I have a warehouse, all white, concrete floors, a big, big space with very high ceilings and nothing inside. And that's where I go to work, and I like that because I just like to be alone and quiet. Is it explainable as a typical fashion designer? No. But am I a typical fashion designer? I don't think so.
The Maier woman is not a woman who doesn't have fun. My woman is not a woman who doesn't have a life. I like clothes to suggest something. I'm gay, but so what? I still have that sensibility that I like to look at a beautiful woman, and I'm as intrigued as any straight man. I probably look even harder because I like what you don't see.
There's another little vision in my life, going into a restaurant in New York years ago: All the women are sitting in their little strapless dresses with their cleavage, and there's this one woman in a sleeveless turtleneck and pants. And I can tell you that every man in that restaurant looked at that woman's arms. It was hypnotizing when everything was covered up. Just the face, the conversation - and you see the arms. And the arms and the hands become an obsession. I like that.
The It Bag is a totally marketed bullshit crap. You make a bag, you put all the components in it that you think could work, you send it out to a couple of celebrities, you get the paparazzi to shoot just when they walk out of their house. You sell that to the cheap tabloids, and you say in a magazine that there's a waiting list. And you run an ad campaign at the same time. I don't believe that's how you make something that's lasting - that becomes iconic as a design.