Public School, In Session

9.5.2013

By Julien Sauvalle

Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne talk about inspiration, rappers who love them, and their new collection

In less than five years, native New Yorkers Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne, the team behind Public School, have gone from designing for P. Diddy’s clothing line to receiving the CFDA Swarovski Menswear Designer of the Year Award. Their next challenge: Making Anna Wintour’s honor roll and winning the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, for which they are finalists this year. We checked in as the duo prepare to take their rising label to the next level.

Higher Learning
Maxwell Osborne: “We both went to public schools, and the name of the brand is about the aesthetic that comes with going to a public school: what you’re wearing, the attitude you bring, who you hang out with. New York schools mean a lot to us.”

Their Style Icon
Dao-Yi Chow: “We both think George Lewis Jr. of Twin Shadow has that edgy, downtown-cool way about him. He’s artsy yet approachable. We were fans of the band and had a chance meeting after one of their performances. After that, he scored the music for our last three presentations and we shot him for an online campaign.”

Then and Now
MO: “Fall 2013 was about structure, stripping everything away and rebuilding it to find the core of Public School.”
DYC: “The next collection will be more about movement, a blend of sportswear and tailoring.”

Rappers’ Delight
DYC: “Kanye West is the most advanced in his fashion sense, but young artists today, like A$AP Rocky, are very up on new brands. We walked him through the line, and he asked questions about construction, fabric, and trim. It was cool to hear him talk about our products from a designer’s standpoint.”

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