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Zac Posen and Joseph Abboud on Their Creative Process and Advice to Entrepreneurs

Zac Posen, designer and founder of House of Z and creative director of Brooks Brothers womenswear, and Joseph Abboud, chief creative director of Tailored Brands Inc. took part in the “American Fashion: Timeless Traditions in a Global Marketplace” panel moderated by Deborah Needleman, editor in chief of T Magazine: The New York Times at the 2016 American Made NY Summit. 


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On developing a signature style and voice, Posen said, “As a creator you are continuously fine-tuning [and] reflecting on your vision,” noting that “creativity is a lifelong pursuit.” Posen detailed how he is inspired by movies and the “idea of a place where fantasy can meet reality,” as well as anatomical lines and architectural nuances. 


When asked what it means to be an American designer operating within a global marketplace and economy, Abboud, who boasts a successful 30-year career, said, “survival is a form of success,” and notes that it is not only the fact that a product is made in America but that it is made well in America that is the important distinction, stressing the importance of “intrinsic value” in everything he produces. 


On his advice for entrepreneurs, Abboud said, “No one goes through life undefeated... You need intestinal fortitude.”