Arriving at San Pietro all’Orto at the 7th floor, Maria Chiara, the brand’s PR, escorts us to meet Vladimiro Gioia, the upscale fashion designer renowned for his impeccable work in fur, principally, for “Made in Italy.” – by Rosaly Escueta Photography by Frank Gerald Galang How did you start your career? Working as an apprentice in my family’s company from age 12, which produced leather products as well as furs. I also learned Italian handcraft, which led to “Made in Italy,” my passion.
At your parents’ lab, what were the important disciplines they coached you on in this field? That business is very important – the artisan must know it. Know everything about your products — pricing, labelling and distribution. Have solid partners and sales campaigns. Why do you focus only on furs? Fur is a key element of luxury for women – this has always inspired me. Recently I started using silk, prints and embroidered dresses for future collections. Describe your Fall-Winter 16/17 women’s collection? It targets the exceptionally sophisticated woman. Marquetry is the base of the presentation and was inspired by ebanisteria – handcrafted cabinets. Every item is hand-cut, hand-sewn and hand-lined. What were the greatest moments you had when you were working with the artisans? Staying up all night to finish jobs for shows later that day. Where can we purchase your couture? Joyce, Hong Kong; Harrods, London; Lane Crawford, New York; Antonia, Milan; Luisa Via Roma, Florence; Gente, Rome. How did you develop your ready-to-wear collection? We worked with more artisans from small workshops to increase creativity and expand distribution. What piece of advice do you want to give to young designers wanting a career similar to yours? Express everything. Designers sell who they really are – the market appreciates that. Take risks for what you believe in – your dream is the most important thing!