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Digital Subscriptions > Attitude > March 2019 > Squaring the circle

Squaring the circle

Fashion twins Dean and Dan Caten tell Joseph Kocharian how they stay ahead of the game, why it’s important to have a gay voice in the industry and about their drag past…

Dsquared2

Dean and Dan wear clothing throughout all by Dsquared2
Photography Vijat Mohindra

T he fashion world can sometimes be accused of taking itself too seriously — many people who work in the industry will tell you that the movie The Devil Wears Prada is not too far of being fact, with urgent texts and emails derailing your evening with friends or even your sleep in the middle of the night. There are impossible tasks that must be solved (cue Tim Gunn’s Project Runway voice: “Make it work”) and lots of tears and tantrums. It’s also a tricky place to navigate right now, with the global economy and online fast fashion hitting both high end and high street hard.

Raw talent does not always translate to commercial success: designers have lashed bright and burned out like supernovas, and plenty of big brands have been toppled. But 54-year-old twins Dean and Dan Caten, who founded Dsquared2 in 1995, seem to have a magic formula: they’ve manage to be popular with both the upper echelons of fashion — being adored by Vogue, Madonna, Britney and Ricky Martin — as well as we mere mortals.

Their insanely popular “icon” motif is an example of this. It has been worn by Ariana Grande and members of Little Mix, but you just have to walk down a busy high street, or into an airport, and you can bet that you will see someone sporting it. Like the 1990’s CK branding, and the Hiliger “Tommy”, it has transcended from fashion and celebrity to everyone, and that’s the holy grail for a brand. And it proves DSquared2 are still innovative, 24 years after the brand’s inception.

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About Attitude

On the cover: Dsquared2 from drag to designing for Madonna! Inside: Joel Edgerton on directing Boy Erased, the queer Brazilians resisting Bolsonaro, Syria's first openly gay actor, Owen Jones, and more.