Interview by Mia Lazzarini
“Fashion is reinvention of opposites”
Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia is known to be one of the most important weeks for the Australian fashion industry. This year however, MBFWA was challenged by the growing success of Fashion Palette. Spread over two days and open to consumers unlike MBFWA, Fashion Palette showcased some of Australia’s most remarkable established and emerging designers. Held on the 27th and 28th April, Fashion Palette 2012 had industry favourites such as Nicola Finetti, Jayson Brundson, Bettina Liano and Anaessia. Nicola Finetti’s showcase was a particular stand out this year, featuring lots of black and greys with splashes of colour and geometric patterns, as well as flowing A-line maxi skirts. I ended up having a chat with Nicola about his views on contemporary fashion, what influences his designs and some of his general views on the industry…
Originally an architect, having studied in his native Italy and working in Argentina, Finetti moved into fashion design and then to Australia. Finetti’s collections often reflect some architectural elements; straight lines, blocked patterns and simple, structured designs. When asked about his experiences as an architect and the similarities with fashion design, Finetti says, “everything is an expression of your inner-self; architecture and fashion designing are your expressions.” About his designs and his own taste, Finetti continued by saying that “collections and designs are in symbiosis with your [own] creativity and your personal taste”.
Finetti’s personal taste has a penchant for contradiction then, as his designs often display some form of contradiction, whether by colour, structure, cut, style, or in the overall collection itself. This contradiction can be seen as a reflection of the fashion industry according to Finetti, “contradictions and opposites are what the fashion industry is rich of. Fashion is reinvention of opposites”. Contradictions are indeed rampant within the fashion industry, with several issues persistently striking the fashion industry and producing varying responses. One issue that often finds media attention is that of super skinny models. Karl Lagerfeld controversially once stated that ‘no one wants to see curvy girls on the catwalk’ and while many designers have responded to this by banning emaciated looking models from their shows, Finetti has agreed with Lagerfeld saying, “yes, purely true!”. The issue of animal rights often arises also, particularly concerning fur. Asked about the issue, Finetti stated, “real furs are boring, faux fur is funny and cool”.
Fur (mainly faux but also real) has already been seen to be a big trend this winter, both in collections and street-wear, but the fashion industry is always looking forward to the next trend. When asked what he predicted the next big trend to be, Finetti assuredly answered “90’s looks, from [David] Bowie to Duran Duran.” Fashion is constantly changing, with trends quickly coming and going and this is one of Finetti’s favourite aspects of being in the fashion industry. Change isn’t necessarily an easy accomplishment however; “the pro’s [are being] able to be in continuous change of creativity and challenges… [but] sometimes people do not accept changes if they are too fast. They are afraid to lose [their] identity.”