These days, Idris Elba is a busy man. Not only is he currently promoting his film Beasts of No Nation at the Toronto International Film Festival, he's also shooting the upcoming Star Trek Beyond movie and just launched his own capsule of men's clothing for the British streetwear brand Superdry. When Elba arrived at InStyle's TIFF lounge and portrait studio today, he walked in wearing one of the sweaters from his collection, a blue design with an aqua shoulder stripe that he showed off to all the editors in the room. Naturally, he was ready to talk all things seam and thread.
"It was really inspiring," Elba told InStyle of his design process. "I worked with a real designer—I wasn’t designing, he was—but I was sort of influencing what I like. This is pretty plain stuff so it’s not really going to break the mold, but certain design features I was particular about."
He also knows looking stylish is a full-time job. "My whole philosophy behind this is that clothing is a 24-hour business," Elba said. "So I'm wearing it now and I don’t feel out of place, but if I were to go to dinner tonight, I could still wear it and I wouldn’t feel out of place."
For Elba, design is not so different from acting: "People say, ‘How did you end up doing all this stuff?' I tell them, 'Because it all comes from the same source.'" In fact, the creative energy he utilizes for both crafts runs deep. "As a kid, remember how if you didn’t have a certain toy, you’d imagine it or you’d make up something? And the next thing you know, your imagination was firing off?" he said. "It’s kind of the same process. I don’t know how to design clothes, but I know what I’d like to wear." He certainly knows how to make himself look good, if we say so ourselves.
Check out the full 250-piece line when it hits stores and superdry.com this November.