Being a young designer today amidst dreams, reality, difficulties and opportunities. How are stylists doing after the lockdown? New talent today is getting younger and feistier than ever.
Benedetta Lanzione is a young (really young) designer from Campana. We met her a few days ago doing a Fashion Graduate installation project for a Digital Fashion Week. We appreciate her style, and above all her modesty. She’s a dreamer with both feet firmly on the ground. She’s never stopped dreaming, despite all the closed doors, some even slammed in her face. She just keeps on building her professional career with a slightly harder nose. We talked with her about the difficulties facing a talented young designer.
Who is Benedetta really?
B.L.: I think I’m a “chaos of emotions” so it’s not always easy for me to define who I am. One of my defining characteristics is certainly determination, along with the love and the passion I put into everything I do. I consider myself an “excessive” person, I always go all out, living every emotion to the full and totally immersing myself in the things I dedicate myself to. I’m very demanding, not of others but of myself. I’m always pushing myself beyond my limits and if necessary I’ll go against everyone to get what I want.
Why did you choose fashion? Why do you find it so fascinating?
B.L.: I’ve loved the world of fashion and art in general since I was very little. What I love about these two worlds, which often coincide for me, is the kind of freedom they give me. There’s nothing makes me feel freer than when I’m creating and this certainly influenced me in choosing fashion as a career. What’s always fascinated me about this sector is the opportunity it gives to communicate who I am and what I feel, through sketches, fabrics and colours. I’ve always been something of an introvert, and always found it hard to express my feelings. The chance to externalise them through my creations is one of the things I love most about this world. Few other sectors give the possibility of communicating without saying a word.
Do you have any doubts or fears?
B.L.: At the moment I don’t have any particular doubts, at least not as regards my choice of career. My experience at the Naples Fashion Academy made me aware of who I am and who I want to be. Like all young designers about to embark on their careers, leaving the “security” of the University behind them, there’s the fear of not being quite ready, of not being able to emerge or express yourself to the best, but I’ve learned to have faith in myself and I know I can do it.
Your pipe-dream? And the natural steps for realising it?
B.L.: My pipe-dream is to create my own brand. It’s a dream I’ve had since childhood, when I used to play with offcuts of fabric making clothes for my dolls that I’d photograph like they were top models. Apart from a few moments of doubt I don’t think I’ve changed much since those days. I’ve kept, or better, rediscovered my desire to create and to express my feelings through my clothes, and I really hope this passion of mine can one day become my livelihood. I know that creating a brand is an ambitious project, and I know perfectly well I have to keep on working with passion and determination to be able make it real. The steps to get there certainly involve getting all the experience I can, experience that enriches me in a cultural, personal and professional sense, and that gives me the maturity it takes to create something truly my own.
What opportunities do young designers have today?
B.L.: I believe young designers have a range of opportunities, though they don’t always manage to seize them. The web itself is an important opportunity in itself. There are lots of contests and interesting initiatives to take part in that are often undervalued. I think that if you love what you do, you have to be willing to put yourself out there in every possible way, from university projects to social contests and anything else that gets you noticed and helps you grow at the same time.
What can we do to help young talent emerge?
B.L.: I mentioned the web before. I think it’s one of the best channels to use to help emerging talent. Contests like LOKE offer great opportunities for young talent to take their first steps in the world of work. During the lockdown I saw and took part in a lot of interesting initiatives, and I hope they’ll continue in the future once this emergency is finally over.
What is LOKE for you?
B.L.: Loke for me is opportunity. The opportunity to put myself out there, through different but always stimulating contests. The chance to be seen and appreciated, and get advice from experts in the sector, which is always a positive thing that helps in our personal and professional growth. Loke is an opportunity to measure up, not only with other young designers, but above all with myself and my abilities. This is one of the things I love above all else.