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Elisa Palomino

March 18 2011

Born in the late sixties in Spain, in Valencia to be precise, Elisa Palomino discovered fashion as a child in her eccentric grandmother’s attic, where she began to develop her style, mixing vintage clothes with Asian kimonos. After studying at Central St Martins in London, she then went on to work with some of the most important names in contemporary fashion. Her meeting with the director Tristan von Christann was particularly important, as the designer recounts.

What path did you take for the Elisa Palomino collection and what made you decide to create the line under your own name?

E.P The line came about after many years spent working in the industry, I have collaborated with some important names like Moschino and Galliano. Meeting my husband, Tristan, was important – we decided together to take on this project, creating the line which debuted in New York in February 2010.

Tell me, where do the inputs for your work come from?

E.P Inspiration can come from anywhere, above all from my artist friends, scenographers, film directors, hat makers, painters, musicians – I’m inspired by their creative work but also my own collection of antique textiles and by looking at the eccentric old ladies around me.

Is the street still an important element for inspiration?

E.P Absolutely, you can’t stay inside, the most beautiful things are always out and about and need to be sought out and appreciated!

What woman do you design for?

E.P An ageless woman, she could be anything from 15 to 90 years old. She’s very romantic, sensual and full of life.

What was the experience of ‘Who’s on next?’ in Rome like?

E.P Gratifying and marvellous. Franca Sozzani, editor-in-chief of Italian Vogue, who sponsors the prize, and Simonetta Gianfelici, who works behind the scenes of the competition, were two fairies whose magic wands made my most incredible dreams a reality.

What are the distinctive traits of your designs?

E.P There’s a lot of research on the subject or initial idea, then comes the three-dimensional emboriodery, the fallen chiffon flowers and a thousand different techniques which best represent the projected input and the initial idea.

What are your projects for the future?

E.P To make costumes for the opera. I adore the Italian Baroque period, from Vivaldi to Monteverdi.

Interview conducted by Stefano Guerrini ©