Designer Duo Public School on Holey Underwear and Their Miami-Based Collaboration

Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne are at the top of the fashion game. The duo behind Public School earned the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) Swarovski Award for Menswear and the prestigious CFDA/Vogue Fashion Award in 2013, and were named 2014’s CFDA Menswear Designer of the Year. As if that wasn’t enough, they were just recently nominated for CFDA’s 2015 Menswear Designer of the Year and Swarovski Award for Womenswear, for their debut collection for women. Needless to say, they know how to dress.

It should come as no surprise then that during Miami’s biggest music week of the year, music fans Chow and Osborne have partnered with the hottest, invite-only ticket during Miami Music Week, Red Bull Guest House, to release something special. The pair is calling their latest collaboration, “Tropic City."

The pack features five pieces every guy wishes he had as part of his wardrobe: a muted white and navy New Era floral snapback, black Onia swim trunks, classic Tumi black wheeled duffel, a rad mesh white tank, and "You’re Welcome" tee. For the big finish they’ve rounded up 100 Jordan’s that have never being released.

“We’re giving them away to friends and family,” says Osborne referring to the likes of Sean Combs (AKA P. Diddy), who swung by yesterday to collect, try, and thank the duo for his pair.

Should you be lucky enough to be invited to Red Bull Guest House, you’ll be able to grab a Tropic Pack for yourself.  

We sat down with Chow and Osborne to talk collaborations, holes in underwear, and hear them finish each other’s sentences.

New Times: Where did the idea for the “Tropic Pack” come from?
Osborne: it’s a nice little gift set that the DJs get and we wanted to extend it to hotel guests. Maybe they forgot swimming trunks or their hat or a tee, but this is the perfect little set to hang out by the pool and party all week.

You guys are heavily known for your collaborations. How do decide who you want to collaborate with? Is the a certain criteria?
Osborne: I think now were at a good place where we can pick and choose brands we want to work with. We’ve know Onia for quite some time so when we had opportunity to do this gift bag we definitely wanted to reach out to them and do a swimming trunk and you know if you do a hat definitely reach out to New Earth. If you do sneaker it’s Jordans. If you’re doing a bag we choose Tumi always, and the t-shirt and tank we made ourselves.

Chow: They’re also partners that we’ve developed relationships with that are working or have worked on bigger projects with us, so it made sense to go back to these people that have shown us love and have already developed a relationship.

What advice would you give to people starting their own brands?
Osborne: Run away, run fast!

Chow: Don’t do it unless you know you’re going to see yourself spending the next 20 years of your life. Develop your own point of view and stay true to it.

How do you guys think you’ve changed or developed or grown if at all?
Chow: I think probably just a little more confidence and a little more patience not to try and jump and do everything at one time. And then always believe in yourself, especially when it comes to collaborations or partnerships like this. You always want to work with the best people and the best partners

Why not offer for more than four days here?
Osborne: We have a lot of other things happening. This is just the perfect Tropic Pack that’s perfect for Red Bull for this moment.

What else are you working on?
Collaborations that are going to happen.

That’s vague.
Osborne: One we can say: [We] just did a collaboration with Oliver Peoples.

Do you guys ever disagree?
Osborne: All the time.

About what?
Osborne: About disagreeing. A lot of things come up and there’s always going to be a disagreements.

Chow: I disagree with all the stupid shit he wants to do. I’m like no lets not do it.

Osborne: And all he dumb shit he wants to do I tell him the same. But yeah, we disagree and then whoever feels stronger wins that battle. It’s a passion fight.

What are the staples of a good wardrobe?
Chow: Clean underwear.

Osborne: Clean socks.

Chow: Yes. Well, let’s change that. New underwear and new socks like every month or every couple of months.

So holes in underwear are a no-no?
Chow: Nah!

Osborne: No matter how lucky you think they are, they have to go unless you give up on life.

Chow: Also, a black t-shirt and crisp white shirt.

Osborne: A nice watch.

Chow: A good pair of pants that you could wear from the morning through evening.

Osborne: And some nice eyewear.

Favorite brands?
Osborne: Nike, Apple, Red Bull.

Chow: Such a label whore

Do you guys pack light? What advice do you have for people packing?
Chow: Yeah, I think for us part of the concept of Public School is to pack a little bit lighter and make piece that are versatile enough for you to get multiple wears out of them.

Anything else you’d want people to know?
We love Miami a lot

Craziest night in Miami?
Osborne: I don’t remember. I know it happened, but I don't remember it.