Rebekka Bay recently unveiled Gap’s Spring 2014 men’s and women’s line in New York to the international fashion media in New York City – her first collection debut since coming on board in 2012 as Gap creative director and executive vice president for global design.
The designer sat down with us to dish on her inspirations, living in New York City and the importance of being blue.
On what inspired her first Gap collection.
The real inspiration came from Gap. My starting point was actually the Gap product icons. It’s an exercise in how to apply seasonality.
I felt a strong, romantic mood coming on for fall, and that trickled back into summer and spring. Having florals, more pretty florals. I also wanted to add a new take on camouflage.
The “American uniform” is khakis and an Oxford shirt. So the real inspiration is to create – and recreate – this “uniform.” You take all your items and you start mixing them up and crossing them. That “uniform” becomes a floral shirt that’s very pretty, or a denim shirt with a snow wash on your jeans, and it becomes very fashion-forward.
And I’m really excited that everyone is saying the 2014 spring collection feels “so Gap” but fresh and new at the same time.
Blue is the new white.
We looked to Lord Snowden’s portraits, and he always puts his subjects in blue shirts rather than white shirts because it softens the expression. And I think the perfect white shirt for Gap is a blue shirt. Blue is the color of Gap. I strongly feel we own denim and everything that comes with that and all the fabrications – denim, chambray, indigo.
How the NYC backdrop inspired the Danish-born Rebekka.
When you move to a new city, you immerse yourself and get to know it. Truly unique to New York is nature in the middle of an urban environment. Landscape, gardening, buildings, furniture serve as installations. It’s so artistic, conceptual and easy to grasp. It’s for the many. There’s no exclusivity. And you do it your way. You experience it your way. Those are real Gap values. I really wanted to translate that urban environment and the great outdoors, that’s such an American thing. You drive for two hours and you’re on the beach or you’re in the mountains. That meaning between the city and the countryside, I wanted to recreate in how we live and how we dress.
What spring pieces she wants in her closet.
Definitely the cuffed jeans and the cuffed denim jacket -- those I really love. The bomber jacket – we have a quilted chambray and a nylon -- that’s on my list. The men’s sweatshirts, I’m going to buy for myself. The men’s utility jacket, I’m going to buy for myself. There are a lot of pieces I want to get my hands on.