Airfield CEO Walter Moser is leading the celebrations of the family-run business’s 80th anniversary with the launch of Atelier – a tailored, premium collection.
Based by the picturesque Atterse Lake in Austria, womenswear brand Airfield was founded 81 years ago as a children’s tailoring business.
Today, it creates sports-inspired womenswear with a formal twist and is known for its nylon jackets. With 600 global stockists – 40 in the UK including Yoox and Peter Hahn – the business is thriving and is launching a luxury Atelier collection in celebration of its 80th anniversary.
Wholesale prices for the brand range from £89 for T-shirts to £799 for outerwear. CEO Walter Moser has worked at the business since 1992 and been CEO since 2003, and is the third generation of his family to run the business. Drapers spoke to him to find out more about the brand.
What’s your background?
Airfield is a family-owned business in the third generation. I grew up with the company and decided very early on that one day, I would follow in my father’s footsteps and work in the business. After I finished school I went to Florence to study Italian. Afterwards, I completed several fashion internships before I finally entered the company.
What does your role involve on a day-to-day basis?
I became CEO in 2003, and day-to-day tasks range from design meetings to wholesale strategies and everything in between.
How would you describe the ethos of the brand?
We use fabrics from classic outerwear styles to create collections for business women. It is definitely sporty fabrics and technical innovations that make Airfield clothes unique. Our DNA is defined by different kinds of nylon, fashionable jersey and flattering prints
How has the brand evolved during its 80-year history?
Airfield started as a tailor for childrenswear in 1938. We then extended the business into unisex outdoor wear and today we mainly specialise in woman’s business collections. The womenswear range launched in 1995.
Can you tell us a bit about the Atelier collection?
We still run an atelier with 30 dressmakers at our headquarters in Seewalchen, Austria. For spring 19 we have decided to launch the Atelier collection: an exclusive line of tailored styles made from premium, luxury fabrics. The range revives classic pieces while encompassing modern, sporyy silhouettes with a contrasting colour palette. Retail prices start at £248.
Why did you launch the collection?
We originally launched the Atelier collection to counter mass production and challenge the cheap fashion market.
How do you stay motivated and inspired?
I have a wonderful wife who motivates me and gives me new creative input. I travel a lot and take my inspiration from the different countries I visit.
What have been some of the highlights from your time with the brand?
Every single collection is a highlight. However, working with Claudia Schiffer and Sharon Stone sticks out as two of the main highlights when they wore the brand’s clothing [in advertising campaigns].
How do you see the brand developing in the next few years?
We will continue to maintain the DNA of the brand and work towards making every piece a must-have.
What is one piece of advice you would give your younger self?
Distance yourself from the mass market. It’s so much more important to have fun with what you are doing and how you are doing it – that is success.
Favourite clothing brand
I like creative brands that still focus on quality and design
Favourite places to shop
London, Milan, Paris, Florence
Last fashion purchase
I bought a hoodie in Milan
Last book you read
The Toleman Story by Christopher Hilton
Last film you watched
Working in a fabric factory close to Modena
A pilot. Otherwise, any job with creative people
What would we find you doing at the weekend
Walks in the forest with my wife and our dogs, followed by a meal in typical Austrian restaurant