This season, several fashion journalists pointed to the failed attempt of Italian fashion to renew itself - expressing their harsh criticism towards the Spring/Summer 2015 collections showcased in Milan. But if you take a look at fashion off the runway, you can actually discover plenty of up-and-coming talents, such as the Milan-based fashion designer, Giuseppe di Morabito, who are eager to cultivate the "Made in Italy" legacy, by challenging traditional aesthetics and commercial expectations. In fact, the 22-year-old designer launched DI MORABITO in 2013, with the aim to design both womenswear and menswear, that reinterprets Italian craftsmanship with an edgy twist. MODEM sat down with Giuseppe in order to talk about his brand, Italian fashion, and future perspectives.
MODEM: Giuseppe, could you tell us more about your background? DI MORABITO: I always have been passionated by the beauty of my own country and its history. In 2013, I decided to express my aesthetic vision through fashion design, and I started my studies at the Istituto Marangoni in Milan. Once I was done learning about basic techniques and garment construction, I decided to go beyond the academic sphere. I felt the need to produce a collection for the customer, rather than for the purpose of academic assignments, that's how DI MORABITO was born.
MODEM: Which are your main sources of inspirations? DI MORABITO: I draw inspiration from Italian history and its great artistic heritage. For instance, I used the bees as a leitmotif of our SS15 collection; an element that we hand-embossed and hand-stitched on our pieces. The idea came to me after analyzing the work of Italian artist Pietro da Cortona, who used the theme of bees in his frescos to celebrate the heraldic emblems of the Barberini family.
MODEM: How important is it for you to maintain craftsmanship alive? DI MORABITO: It is fundamental. Me and my team built our image according to the values in which we believe in: quality and research. I personally follow up each step of the design process, from the choice of fabrics, all sourced in Italy, to the final finishings. The details are all done by hand, according to local craftsmanship techniques.
MODEM: How would you describe your signature style? DI MORABITO: A mix of classic and modern styles developed with a minimal design approach. My outfits are wearable, figure-flattering, effortless, and elegant at the same time.
MODEM: How do you see your future as a young brand based in Italy - a country which is currently facing an harsh financial crisis? DI MORABITO: We want to grow in a sustainable way, by gradually expanding our brand within the fashion industry. We will always be based in Italy though. If things go wrong, we - as representatives of today’s young generation - have to be strong and find a solution. Italy has to reinvent itself, and with courage and strength everything can change.