An Italian Fashion Designer in Amsterdam
Domenico Cioffi’s eponymous clothing line has only been around since last year, but the young Italian designer who graduated from European Institute of Design in Rome in 2009 is already gaining the kind of attention usually reserved for much more established brands.
Inspired by the colors of his native Mediterranean home and the minimalism of Northern Europe, where he spends part of the year, Domenico has produced two collections, both of which have been presented at Amsterdam Fashion Week. While his experience working with international brands have given Domenico the knowledge of production and fabrics necessary for success, it’s his inspired combination of northern and Mediterranean influences that makes his work unique. From a sandy beige jacket to a shiny blue and black jacket and skirt, his striking graphic style and intriguing color palette promise an exciting international future for this Italian designer.
Were you always interested in fashion? When did you know you wanted it to be your career?
I have always been interested in fashion, but I went through different stages, I began to study as a jewelry designer but when I finished school I started to work as shoe designer. After a year my boss asked me to also design clothing for a big Italian brand.
Do you remember the first time you ever really fell in love with a piece of clothing and its design?
When I was a child I was in love with a military parka, I fell in love with all the details, the form and fabric. Twenty years have gone by and this coat is still in my closet.
London, New York, Milan and Paris are the cities that people typically think of as being fashion capitals. How did you arrive in Amsterdam and what made you decide to establish your atelier there?
I love Amsterdam and I live here part of the year. The Netherlands is a country that really helps emerging young designers to succeed, however it still is not easy.
Aside from your passport, what makes you an “Italian” fashion designer?
First, even though the designers who influence me the most are from France and Belgium, I hope its because of my style. Second, I think it’s because of my approach to the product, the precision and quality, all of which are typical of Made in Italy.
What puts you in a creative mindset?
Visiting museums and seeing a lot of movies.
How many people tend to be involved in creating your collection? How do you select a team and communicate your vision to them?
There are only two people in the creative team, but then to complete the collection involves at least 5 other people. The people who work with me must be accurate, reliable, and have fun doing this work because this is the most beautiful job in the world. The best way to share my point of view with my collaborators is to show them my sketches and moodboard and talk with them all the time. The collection is the sum of my team’s ideas.