An Interview by ANDRADA BODEA x 33 MAGAZINE
The Istituto Marangoni presented a unique fashion show in London featuring top talents chosen by an authoritative jury of industry professionals. Through a visionary reflection upon the contamination between fashion, technology and environment, the event gives voice to a new generational understanding of concepts and trends of the future, within an international landscape.
Each student presented their own personal view on inspirations from all over the world, ranging from Chinese traditions to Italian heritage and performance arts, through history and futuristic lenses, all the way through the 60sand 70s swinging London and the USSR Russia from the 20s. The reach in terms of creative outcome is entirely global, as a reflection of both London’s and the School’s international approach and horizons.
The event is a unique experience that combines technology, nature and forward thinking mindset and provides a glimpse into how these elements can drive a new generation full of optimism and utopian ideals.
An Interview with MARANGONI talent Silje Wamnes
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your designer journey.
My full name is Silje Wamnes and I grew up in a small town in Norway called Drøbak. I’ve always been fascinated by clothing and loved playing dress-up for as long as I can remember. For me, there has always been something magical about how the clothes we wear can affect (and completely modify) the way we feel and the way we show up in the world. I think I decided that I wanted to be a designer when I was 13 years old.
What was your inspiration for the collection and how did you explore it?
The inspiration for my collection started with me exploring topics such as feminism in fashion, what makes a woman feel powerful, what makes a woman feel feminine and how the two emotions relate to each other. I felt called on to create an image of a powerful woman who is not trying to show up in the world as a man, but a woman who is expressing her power through her divine femininity. Elements of nature and a sense of “rawness” felt like a natural companionship to these emotions and I also wanted to bring in, or rather bring back, an element of craftsmanship, as I find there is something very feminine and powerful about the love and patience that goes in to practicing these techniques.
The signature elements of my collection are definitely the pieces created with the macrame knotting technique in unrefined wool and recycled cotton ropes. When reflecting on my research on femininity I came to remember this knotting technique my mother taught me when I was younger (macrame) to make bracelets. It resonated strongly with the feeling and image I wanted to convey and so I started to play around with the idea of doing a macrame piece that went around the whole body to create a dress. It took a lot of trial and error and finding the right ropes and material was also a time consuming process, but once it all came together (the materials and the technique) it almost felt like the pieces where making themselves. It is a very time consuming process, but luckily a process I have really come to love. It’s kind of like my meditation.
What is the future of fashion in your perspective and what are your main goals as a designer?
To me the future of fashion is people centered. I believe and hope we live in a time where people are becoming more and more aware of their choices and the effects these choices have on, not only themselves, but on the people around them and the world we live in. I hope to see a fashion world that steps away from trends and that embraces what our time is really all about; individuality. As a designer I want to design for women who wear their clothing with purpose, not to fit in or to follow a trend, but to feel empowered. I hope we start to consider the meaning of our clothes to be something beyond just garments. Who made them, what are they made of, where did they come from and what are we telling the world by wearing them? These things matter and I hope to be part of a fashion world that truly embraces these concepts.
Contributor: ANDRADA BODEA | Photographer: SIMON ARMSTRONG