090 – Naeem Khan, In The Atelier With An American Treasure

Naeem Khan

World-renowned fashion designer Naeem Khan invites the American Fashion Podcast team into his showroom for a poignant discussion of work, life, and the future of the fashion industry.

Naeem Khan highlights:

  • “We have amazing craftsmen in this country. When Italy or Japan, where you have such high paid labor, can produce, why can’t America?” – Naeem Khan (10:05)
  • “Unless and until you don’t have something different and something new to offer, if every designer has the same kind of looking clothes, it becomes a nightmare. I was studying the business which is the lower end business of what I do… I walked into stores like Neiman’s, Saks, and… there’s so much product. It made me afraid– how do you find your place in there, number one… number two, how do you make it so it’s viable that the store can sell it and not come back to you and say, ‘we need X million in markdown,’ because the whole thing is done on agreements with the stores, and that is a most dangerous game to play, because if you don’t meet those numbers, the next thing you know, the successful side of your business is going to be coming down with this new business that you’ve started. “- Naeem Khan (36:38)
  • “You know, you go up, and you have to come down in order to go back up again, because you need to find that other. What is the next thing? But it always comes. In all of my years of designing, I know that’s it’s a cycle, so don’t get depressed. Hold yourself. You’re going to go through it. It will be all fine.”- Naeem Khan (41:07)
  • “It was important to m father and my grandfather that we keep the tradition of the family alive, but my kids grew up in America. So, at first I was very worried that they grew up so modern, they went to Dalton, they went to amazing colleges… that they would not be interested. They would become victim to our society. So, I made it a point that I introduced it to them in the most fun way.”- Naeem Khan (44:31)

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