Essential: Jakob Hetzer | Hypebeast

For our final installment of Essentialwe talk to Jakob Hetzer, a designer and creative consultant born in Detroit, raised in Germany, and now based in Los Angeles.

Having gathered a dedicated following early on through his unique personal style, which often balances refined simplicity with functional details and grit, he continues to interact with the community through his self-titled product line described as “- A CONVERSATION.” Delivering products ranging from copper-hued trucker jackets to goatskin gloves and handcrafted .925 silver jewelry, the label operates at a pace determined not by commercial standards but by what feels essential in the given moment.

Hetzer flows freely between product, art and fashion, presenting new ideas only when they have had time to mature and meet his exacting standards. Through many years of working with customers and partners globally, he continues to develop his distinct taste while documenting his development. Parts of the plan can be found through JH – CURRICULUM, which offers exclusive content such as a bi-weekly literature column, JH projects and musings from guest writers.

Follow us below as we glimpse into the life of the enigmatic creative through his carefully selected selections Essential picks that include items from JH and everyday items that reflect his current lifestyle.

Visvim Black Elk Flannel

I’ve had this thing for years, it’s been through a lot. A comfortable and sophisticated (enough) daily driver.

Carpe Diem boots from the 1990s

My most worn footwear, infinitely robust. Comfortable on long days, yet strong enough to withstand the pressure of a motorcycle.

JH – DART CAP – BLACK

We released this hat at the end of 2020 as an attempt to create a comfortable and athletic hat, that feels and looks a little more discreet. So far it has stood the test of time for me.

JH – syllabus

This is a fairly recent item of ours. I couldn’t find a silk scarf that looked subtle enough, yet felt meaningful, so we started working on our own. It comes in handy when traveling, cycling, etc. We’ve managed to create something of an educational manifesto to warp and print this piece. I have found joy in deciphering it in its veiled form.

Carol Christian Poell Self-Edge Vest Bag

Perhaps my most useful piece of clothing. Used almost daily for over 5 years, it has acquired a nice color from exposure to sun, wind etc.

Can you tell us the idea behind the label’s 2022 “Quintet” series and what you have planned for the future of JH?

The concept for JH – QUINTET was to recreate historical patterns using modern bespoke materials and finishes, and then present them in sculptural form. We rarely release more than one item at a time, but sometimes a concept is worth expanding for a larger set of products. There is constant development at JH, we usually work on several projects at the same time, and then publish as work allows. We are currently working on an exciting international collaboration, as well as a brand new medium that we look forward to exploring.

How deeply have you found that your everyday goods affect your experience of the world?

I think I’ve done a good job of finding a uniform that I don’t have to worry about, I don’t want my clothes or my daily carry to be over the top. Reliable products should not take up mental space – something we also strive for at JH.

What motivated you to take the leap to attend fashion school after business school? Did you find your formal studies beneficial to you in starting your own named brand?

I don’t really believe in traditional education, I’ve bounced around between schools and gathered information as needed, until I felt ready to move on. I am grateful for my shared education between business & fashion school, although I don’t think you should rely too much on either.

Can you walk us through your everyday life? Would you describe your lifestyle as regulated?

My everyday life is all over the place, a lot of traveling and many new challenges. As a result, I try to give myself as much structure as I can with a strict morning routine. Wake up early, meditation, stretching, exercise. My lifestyle is very inconsistent, yet disciplined.

We see the special edition JLC Reverso. Have you become more into watches lately?

In recent years, my interest in watches has actually been somewhat declining, I have experienced that the market and the public interest are quite oversaturated. I got rid of some more serious watches and stick to a fairly condensed collection now. This Reverso Tribute (on a Nato strap) is a good unobtrusive whisk.

What have you heard or read lately? Do you consume most of your content online?

I’ve been listening to a lot of REM, a lot of Vatican Shadow, it’s always a wide spectrum. As for books, I like to switch between old classic literature and modern non-fiction, jumping from Albert Camus to Hans Ulrich Obrist, etc. I use a lot of online media, as my job requires. I try my best to offset that with physical literature and organic instinct.

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