‘I’ll show you who’s boss, Kate Moss’. Henry Holland was working on the teen magazine Bliss when he soared to fame with his tongue in cheek catchphrase T-shirts. Everyone whose anyone would recognise his rhyming slogan t-shirts, he’s best friends with supermodel Agyness Deyne, but what of the man behind the madness.
Holland was born on 26 May 1983 in Ramsbottom, Lancashire. He always knew he was headed towards a career in fashion, giving his mum the Gok Wan treatment from the age of three!
Holland admits that he started his business almost accidentally, designing T-shirts for his friends, affectionate yet satirical, they rapidly became a fashion crowd in-joke.
In 2006, designer Gareth Pugh appeared at the end of his London Fashion Week catwalk wearing a T-shirt tribute to fellow designer Giles Deacon (“Get Yer Freak on Giles Deacon). Soon there was a fashion frenzy and everyone wanted a Henry Holland T-shirt. He labels it a transition, he was a writer, he wrote on clothes, and then he made clothes.
It was only later in life that Holland realised he was gay, but he credits his sexuality to his experimental approach to fashion. For him there isn’t that whole thing of, ‘I can’t wear that I’d look like a poof, because you are a poof.’ Holland is not afraid to look stupid in the name of style, for him it’s part of the fun! The first time he was invited to a Downing Street reception for the fashion industry he rocked up in a pink and lime green floral suit. Everyone else wore black.
A nugget of wisdom from Holland, don’t always listen to your careers advisor. The fashion world would be missing one of their shining stars if Henry had listened to his; his job questionnaire concluded that for him the perfect job would be a fishmonger.
There can be no doubt that Holland is the man who puts the fun back in fashion.