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We head to Milan for an exclusive interview with breakthrough bag designer GIANCARLO PETRIGLIA who sits down for an interview by DESIGN SCENE Fashion Features Editor KATARINA DJORIC to talk about his beginnings, his days at Trussardi and the rise of his eponymous label.


How did you first get interested in fashion?
Since my childhood the fashion I was surrounded by fashion. My mother has always been what currently could be called a “Couturier”, when I was six years old, I looked and admired the passion of my mother while making all those beautiful wedding dresses. Therefore I preferred to rest my hands on a sewing machine pedal, rather than ride a bike. I’ve been conceived in Fashion, a Fashion “world”.

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You’ve worked at Trussardi shortly after graduating, what is the most important thing you’ve learned there?
I stared to work in Trussardi firstly as a personal assistant of Mrs. Trussardi and later as an Artistic director. The most important thing that I learnt there is who I really am, and the importance of the quality of Thought and Product. It was the most important experience of my life .

You are the winner of Who Is On Next competition in the accessories category. How did that recognition help your career?
Winning WON has been fundamental to my career, to be recognized as the Fashion Accessories Designer.

Your designs are certainly eye-catching, what would you say is the best formula to combine style, femininity and attitude?
The best formula is to look at things with a different point of view, unconventional even though always functional. I see the luxury sentiment as art, the art of knowing how to do, as elegance and uniqueness.

Are there other aspects of the fashion industry that you are also keen in exploring?
While working at Trussardi I’ve got the opportunity to face all the aspects of fashion. However, for my own brand the next steps will be developing Ready-to-wear and shoe lines.

What are you fascinated by at the moment and how does it feed into your work?
I am fascinated by the world of Music, the music scene allows me to see everything less critically and more instinctively.

What makes a perfect IT bag?
The perfect IT bag has to be unique as well as new. I think that research underlies the formation of any creation. For my work, the research starts from the idea of the game, from the chance to experiment and to mix new materials as well as to take inspirations from different art formations.

How do you stay relevant when designing your collections?
By staying true to myself. I recognize and celebrate in my creations the art of knowing Italian heritage, the valorization of craftsmanship, my designers are understanding the art scene. This is important especially in the world of leather goods, to animate my work stands the determination in the realization of unconventional bags. Market logics are also important. Therefore I am here to tell my story by opening a new chapter in fashion and high fashion.

Tell me more about your collaboration with artist Simone Fugazzotto?
I chose to work together with Simone Fugazzotto because of the main theme of this collection, because of Simone’s own world, and also since I have an Artistic background as well, art is integral par of my collections. A partnership involving the customization of my two iconic models: the soft and asymmetric Paloma bag and the provocative and refined Queen bag, with its innovative and contemporary forms, both realized in multi-colored calf. The artwork chosen that will be represented on the these two model is “The Kiss”. It is a reflection of love, its contradictions and how in the love story the line between balance and disorder is very fragile. The famous Rubik’s cube becomes the metaphor of the human’s need to find the right fit between two souls who meet and, after burying the hatchet of initial reticence, they kiss each other in the sign of a newborn and passionate love.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever gotten?
Be yourself, and don’t let fears stop you, and for this my motto is – The best is yet to come!

Where do you see your label in the next 10 years?
I see it as an Italian brand present globally, which tells the new international story of Italian creativity.

Portrait photo by Adriano Russo.
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Originally published in DESIGN SCENE Magazine August 2017 issue, get your copy.

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