Mario Dice and his “vintage of the future”

Mario Dice is a young fashion designer who, after many collaborations with famous fashion houses such as Trussardi, Krizia and Gattinoni, in 2007 founded his own brand with both men and women’s collections.

Mario Dice
Mario Dice

 “If I had to describe my collections with three adjectives, I would say: elegant, ductile and saleable”

His interesting career began when he was only 15 when he started working for Clavin Klein in New York. Then he continued more and more to improve his skills finding every day something new, innovative and fascinating for his prêt-à-porter items.

After years of experiences, now Mario Dice is ready to show to his public what he really intends as fashion with his own brand that debuted, for the first time, on Sunday 18th January at Palazzo Mezzanotte in Milan, with a collection he would like to be the new “vintage of the future”, a new inspiration for future people.

Mario Dice fashion show
Mario Dice fashion show

 

Mario Dice fashion show
Mario Dice fashion show

A few days before the show, the designer told us something more about himself and his creations.

  • As a fashion designer, where do you draw your inspiration from?

It depends. On the one hand, for men’s collections, if the creative director of a brand I collaborate with gives me the mood, I try to get materials as much as possible from that company. By contrast, for that lines drawn mainly by me, such as Zuhair Murad, David Koma or the mine one, I try as much as possible to look around for inspirations. So, for the collection I am going to launch, in the moment in which some time ago I saw future 2015 perspectives, I found that this year there would has been the relaunch of a cd of one of the most important American band, The Ramones. I love them since I was in New York and considering that men’s collections I create are referred to a wide range of clients, from a twenty year old guy to a forty year old man, I intended to get into a project that was going to celebrate an important anniversary and this year The Ramones celebrate their 40 years.

On the other hand, for women’s collections, I love being inspired by design, I appreciate a lot the furniture fairs or new accessories designers and, starting from them, I begin to create embroideries, macramè, silhouettes, all that then makes a collection.

  • Regarding the choice of textiles, do you prefer to use most classical ones or something innovative?

For 80% of collections, I like to use mainly classic textiles. For example in my own collection there are cashmere, silk or mohair woods and also some crêpes, macramè but always mixed with some  contemporary textiles. There is the classic suede that, in this case, is heat-sealed with neoprene, or velvet always matched with neoprene, hand-painted leather then fixed with the laser and studded. Anyway, I like mixing materials.

  • What about your education?

My education is a bit unusual because it’s essentially a working education. I didn’t study at a fashion school, I began working when I was 15 in the USA at Calvin Klein. So,  it is a fieldwork. I grew up in tailor’s shops, with pattern makers, and now I continue to go on the same way thanks to my job as a fashion designer. What I like most is to create my items.

  • What advice would you give to someone who wants to take up your same career? 

I taught in different fashion schools over the years and, after almost 8 years of teaching, I would advise to take my same educational path. I’m not a pro-academy teacher, I firmly believe that a young designer has to learn more in labs or in tailor’s shops.

  • Which elements guide particularly your work ethic?

Firstly, people I work with consider myself a “commercial designer”. I always have the sale perspective. I like to create a fashion collection, because the fashion world always needs a competitive product that looks good, but for me it’s fundamental to create “saleable” collections, wearable not only by models (because everyone knows they are so beautiful) but wearable especially by normal people; this is for me one of my fundamental principles.

  • Do you think that your experiences with important fashion houses have been useful?

My 23 years of consulting are those which helped me most in my education, starting from my experience at Calvin Klein, where I learned what the “real” marketing meant, because even now their motto is to sell as much as possible, up to Zuhair Murad, for which I create women’s collections, worn by the most beautiful celebrities in the world, where I have learned what elegance, luxury, respect for women means, and Trussardi where I have learned how to match different colors in the right way and how to be always flawless. So, collaborating with famous designers continues to help me a lot.

  • In your opinion, what the fashion world needs at present time and how do you live the fact that there is a more and more marked competition between new designers?

Basically, I divide the fashion world into two parts. On the one hand, the press, that is always looking for a new amazing and innovative designer, on the other hand companies, that look for right goods for sale. In my opinion, the fashion world follows these two ways.

  • What do you expect from fashion week?

Surely, this is an excellent springboard that helps a young fashion designer to introduce himself to the public because it is a kind of advertisement for buyers, who can support the brand, and for the press that, in this way, can know new designers’ collections considering that the men’s fashion week lasts only few days in Milan, unlike the women’s one.

  • You create both men and women’s collections. Which are, in you opinion, the selling points of these collections?

The selling point of my own collections is the quality of products I use. Collections are well-made, there is an excellent craftsmanship behind them because I was born in the south of Italy and I grew up in some tailor’s shops. My collection isn’t only mere appearance, but everyone recognizes in it a real Made in Italy product.

  • Future projects and expectations?

I have a new collaboration in progress, that is going to debut at women’s fashion week in February. I hope my brand continue growing more and more in the future, considering that in the last three years it has reached important successes and now I’m very grateful to all people who have always supported me.

Thank you for telling us your story.

Floriana Lucchesi

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