Freedom From Doubt hits the fashion world with a fresh take on the dapper gentleman. Designer Jared Zachary developed his eye for design studying architecture, but his interest in creating spaces soon translated into fashion. He began his neckwear line Freedom From Doubt in 2009 featuring handmade bow and neckties. He has keen sense of both style and quality. We asked Jared about some of his style opinions and influences:
Sarah: Your designs are very dapper and polished. It seems more and more men are returning to a cleaner look. What do you think it is about a boy in a bowtie, or a suit that's so compelling?
Jared: Boys grow up playing in the dirt, but at some point they are expected to present themselves as an adult. I try to create pieces that will allow the look of the well polished, sensible man without giving up the playfulness of the boy he once was.
S:Your work is handmade. That's very important. They also reference a time when things were more well made and tailoring was considered carefully. Could you speak about quality in clothing, how does that effect you personally when you shop?
J: I think of every piece that I acquire as having some sort of personality. Its life begins when it is conceived; it gains its charm, in my mind, from its material, its construction, and where it was produced. All of these inform me of its quality, which affects the way I take care of it. When an item is made by hand, it has an inherent sentimental value passed down from the maker to the purchaser. The highest quality pieces I have purchased are the most important to me because I know that the labor that goes into each detail is priceless.
S: What are some tragic trends that you feel should be done away with?
J: T-shirts with 55 graphics, studs, and rivets isn't tough, tough guys. Keep it simple. Also, wearing multiple neon colors is for road construction, so you don't get hit by a car--which is ironic for those who find their outfit looking like Jackson Pollock painted them with glow sticks. Classic isn't boring, it's timeless for a reason.
S: Amazing! Whats your advice to a woman who wants to wear a bow tie, how should it be done?
J: With confidence. A woman in a bow tie is a very powerful look. My favorite is with the bow worn off to one side, a strapless or off-the-shoulder top, and hair pulled around to the other shoulder to really show it off. No matter what you do, ladies, just own it.
S: What generated you fascination with neck wear? Who are your style icons?
J: When I was getting into fashion, I found that like a lot of art and design, the power was in the details. In fashion, the details are accessories. There aren't as many accessories out there for men as there are for women, and that is a problem. One place where men are likely to sport an accessory is around the neck and that is where my ideas come into the picture. I began designing solely for myself. I wanted a leather bow tie so I asked my girlfriend at the time to teach me how to sew. Soon after, my friends complimented the handcrafted bows I wore around town and began requesting to buy them. I am slowly branching out into other menswear accessories and hope to one day have a full menswear line. As for style icons, I'm trying to not be too cliché when I say I think the Freedom From Doubt man is James Dean meets Frank Sinatra. You can have an attitude about your classiness--party like a rock star, dress like a gentleman.
S: Who are some of your favorite designers to wear?
J: Some of my favorites include John Varvatos (one of my first inspirations in becoming a designer), Karl Lagerfeld, Ralph Lauren, Tom Ford, Band of Outsiders, and Siki Im (who I've assisted in production of his NY Fashion Week shows in 2010 and 2011). They are all different, but they all leave something special and meaningful in the design of their garments that I have learned from.
Shop Freedom From Doubt Bowties, available here.