Thakoon Panichgul on his meteoric rise and life-changing creative reset

I’m excited about what that time [sabbatical] was as for you. Were you afraid to walk away from it for just a minute? What did you find on the other side of it that did not go as you had expected? Was it unexpected?

It was a journey of like sorrow and misery, and saw light at the end of the tunnel. Real goodness In the beginning, when you come up in the fashion industry with runway collections behind you, you have this feeling that if you step off the runway, you will never be seen and heard from again. It’s almost like people will forget you, right? So it’s the fear that was really real. But then, you know, I said, fuck it. Will that be the truth? Let’s see if it succeeds, right? I find out – it’s always been my mantra.

For the first few months, I just wanted to call all my friends and make sure I was still connected. It’s like, do you want to have lunch with me? Let’s have a drink, let’s have dinner, as if I was always trying to stay connected to everyone I knew in that industry because I did not want to be forgotten. And then, after a while, I came to terms with, oh, maybe I should really just travel a little bit. I went to Marrakech. I went to Cuba. I went to Mexico. I just went over it all. And that was when things started to open up creatively. I saw things differently. I stepped out of the fashion bubble. And I saw what the bubble did to people who were still in the bubble. And I was so grateful to have the opportunity to see from that perspective, from my perspective. Creatively, I walked away with so much I started Gay girls, which is my magazine and passion project. That idea came to me while I was on my sabbatical, the new iteration of Thakoon came to me while I was on this sabbatical – I highly recommend it.

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