Archivio

  • Photography  Guglielmo Profeti
  • Styling  Chiara Ficola
  • Words  Giorgia Baschirotto

“Iceland – raw and fascinating with its unspoiled nature.” That is the place that best describes Archivio, according to the designers and founders, Rosita Giammarino and Cecilia Federico. Icy peaks with sharp edges, wild-whipped black-sand beaches, and virgin moorlands on the Nordic Island reflect the spirit of Archivio’s third collection to date, which combines earthy, feminine tones with sharp tailoring and the distinctive androgynous style championed by the Archivio woman – strong, fearless, and with a mystic aura. Yet it is in Italy, between the sunny coastlines of Sicily and the eclectic Milan, that their creations are brought to life, motivated by the idea of modernising and celebrating classic Italian craftsmanship. 

Besides their soft spot for refined materials and impeccable wearability, the duo focuses on details as a means to express feminine sensuality in a unique, non-traditional way. Defying the conventional definitions of sexuality, Archivio seeks to inspire women to feel comfortable in their skin and reconnect with their primal feminine energy. Just as the soft grass that covers the gentle volcano’s slopes in spring, their creations caress the female form, with an untamed, vibrant spirit.


Can you take us back to how everything started? How was Archivio born? 

Archivio took shape slowly during dinners with friends and travels and was born out of the desire to create something of our own. A trip to Israel was the starting point – we have always been fascinated by the customs and traditions of the countries we visit. In Jerusalem we found a mix of identities, habits and manners that deeply inspired us. At that point we started thinking about the name; we wanted the brand to be easily recognisable as “Made in Italy”, that is why we chose an Italian word – Archivio.

What did you feel was missing in the fashion scene when you started? 

Archivio was born a year and a half ago with a capsule collection made with archive prints through which we wanted to present our idea of style. It was a leap of faith – we wanted to see the market reaction. We were contacted by photographers, stylists, and editors, and that gave us more belief in ourselves and the strength to keep creating.

Being an emerging brand in Italy is hard. It is a conservative country with a very complex bureaucratic system. The fashion system revolves around the top labels; only a few people take the risk to believe in young brands and have the curiosity to find out something more about them. We are gradually gaining supporters and attracting people who believe in our project, which is obviously helping us! We feel that fashion in Italy has lacked character lately, that’s why we have decided to take on this challenge.



“Archivio”, which means “archive” in English, recalls a collection of historical records that belong to the past, a title which feels relevant in our culture concerned with nostalgia: do you have a fascination with the past? 

That’s exactly the point – with Archivio we research iconic pieces that are revisited and re-created with new volumes, cuts, and fabrics.

Our backgrounds are different, but we share the same aesthetic. We are both fascinated by the 80s and 90s, and our ideal woman is sophisticated and aware of her femininity. For us nostalgia is linked to the idea of a strong Italy – embodied by the elegance encaplsulated by Made in Italy, the cradle of sartorial tradition praised all over the world.

You unveiled your Autumn/Winter 2017 collection just recently. What are the key pieces in your opinion and why? 

Our iconic piece is always the coat – the whole idea for the collection starts from there. The Autumn/Winter 17/18 collection plays a lot with overlaps and volumes. The focus of the collection is the short, double-breasted coat made of wool with a silk vest underneath. The oversized jacket typically has a men’s cut. We play with the juxtaposition of textures and with the versatility of the piece.

 
Social awareness is dominating fashion this season, and you seem quite concerned with women’s rights to freedom of expression. How do you champion women’s empowerment with your clothes? 

Beauty comes with inner awareness and with the ability to interact with it. The woman we create for embodies this concept. She’s a woman with a strong personality who feels confident about herself and who understands the society in which she lives. Since the beginning we tried to focus on a specific style of customer. We have picked interesting profiles on social networks and we have sent them our iconic t-shirts. In this way, we managed to create a network of personalities with whom we share our vision.

The Archivio woman is sexy yet effortlessly elegant. Would you encourage women to explore their femininity and their instinctive sensuality through clothes? 

Absolutely, but sexy doesn’t mean wearing a low-cut or tight-fitting dress! Sexy is that unexpected part of your body you decide to show or hide. We design what we want to wear – we are the first customers of the brand, and our goal is to create a community of women whose personalities and taste go hand in hand with ours.

 
According to Business of Fashion, Milan Fashion Week has gone through a revamp this season with a slew of young labels. Do you agree with that? And how has the city’s fashion scene welcomed you?

During Milan Men’s Fashion Week a designer definitely has more visibility, while at Woman’s Fashion Week it is more complicated, and there is a lot of competition. If you do not have the right supporters it is very difficult to get noticed, even just for a few minutes.

This year we decided to present our new collection in Paris. The city attracts international buyers and much more attention is given to new brands. We will do our best to present the next collections in Milan, where we hope to have more visibility and space, so that in a future we can contribute to the growth of the ‘Made in Italy’ concept.

Your social media accounts show that you really love traveling. How do your travels influence your work? 

Traveling is a breath of fresh air, it helps give birth to new ideas and to find new inspiration. Traveling opens the mind and enriches people’s personal experience – there’s no doubt that influences our collections.

 

According to Business of Fashion, Milan Fashion Week has gone through a revamp this season with a slew of young labels. Do you agree with that? And how has the city’s fashion scene welcomed you?

During Milan Men’s Fashion Week a designer definitely has more visibility, while at Woman’s Fashion Week it is more complicated, and there is a lot of competition. If you do not have the right supporters it is very difficult to get noticed, even just for a few minutes.

This year we decided to present our new collection in Paris. The city attracts international buyers and much more attention is given to new brands. We will do our best to present the next collections in Milan, where we hope to have more visibility and space, so that in a future we can contribute to the growth of the ‘Made in Italy’ concept.

Your social media accounts show that you really love traveling. How do your travels influence your work? 

Traveling is a breath of fresh air, it helps give birth to new ideas and to find new inspiration. Traveling opens the mind and enriches people’s personal experience – there’s no doubt that influences our collections.


 

See more at archiviowebsite.com