Alexa Chung Gets Real on What it Takes to Build a Brand + Her Long Run With Superga

Fashion collaborations can be as fleeting as an Instagram post.

So it’s noteworthy that Superga and Alexa Chung have been partners for nearly a decade. (Chung first modeled for the brand in her early 20s.) The pair celebrated their fall ’19 campaign — which spotlights both the brand’s iconic styles and the co-branded Superga x Alexa Chung collection — at Milan Fashion Week  Wednesday night.

A few hours after attending the Prada show, which she called “the best one yet,” Chung talked about her long run with Superga and got real about what it takes to build a fashion brand.

On what she’s learned about building a brand:

“Not to do it! It’s really hard work. [Going in], I was very naïve and confident. But it’s a schlep and you have to love it. I’m lucky that I’m still obsessed with clothes after three years. You have to be really passionate to keep it going. No one f**kin tells you that. It doesn’t end. You have these fantastic highs, but then the next day you’re back in the office.”]

alexa chung, superga collection, collaboration, shoes
Alexa Chung x Superga.
CREDIT: Clem Arti

Her long partnership with Superga:

“It’s actually been longer than most of my relationships. When I was younger and I modeled for them, I was in my early 20s. What appealed to me then was I didn’t really know any other trainers. My mom was wearing them, and for me, they were a classic, iconic item and one of those things you can have in your wardrobe for years and years. So when I had the chance to collaborate, it seemed like a more straightforward thing to do [than do classic sneakers myself]. It was similar to our Barbour collaboration in a way. I have natural synergies with these brands.”

On her affinity for shoe design:

“I love designing shoes. They’re one of the only things I can draw well.”

alexa chung, superga collection, collaboration, shoes
Alexa Chung x Superga.
CREDIT: Clem Arti

Opening her London Fashion Week show to the public:

“Prior to this fashion week, we’ve only done two catwalk shows in London. This year, the British Fashion Council said they wanted to open up London Fashion Week and make it a more democratic experience. It was a great idea because we did a show, and then we had a pop-up upstairs. It was see the collection, shop the collection. It was a great opportunity as far as the business goes.”

Launching a YouTube channel with Derek Blasberg:

“One of the goals of the brand is to have a more direct relationship with the consumer, and that’s why we did it. Derek [who heads YouTube’s fashion and beauty partnerships] and I started talking about it one day on a bench outside the Guggenheim in New York. I said sure, but I don’t know if I can afford it. He said, ‘Don’t worry. We’ll help you, and it will pay for itself.’ So we did it in May, and it’s been fantastic and positive. It can be scary when you see the comments box. But they’ve all been really nice. It’s a great way to show the humor part of our business. [Since we launched it in May], we’ve already seen a really positive impact through our e-commerce platform.” [As if on cue, Blasberg walks into the cocktail party.]

FNAAs 2015 Red Carpet Arrivals
Chung at the 2015 Footwear News Achievement Awards, where she was style influencer of the year.
CREDIT: REX/Shutterstock.

How often she wears sneakers:

“Most days really. What I show on Instagram and when I go to events is different than what I wear to the office. I basically wear the same jeans, the same navy-blue jumper and the same sneakers every day. When you are designing and in that realm, it can be aesthetic overload, [so this just works for me].”

Trend she’s over:

Biker shorts.

Want more?

Alexa Chung Takes a Trip to Big Sur — in Platforms — for Fall ’19 at LFW

Alexa Chung Teams Up With Superga on Chunky Sneakers With Luxe Vibes for Fall

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