Sados

London based Italian, Carlotta Gherzi, is a young, hip, up and coming designer who is
definitely on the ‘ones to watch out for in 2005′ list. Her label SADOS according to Carlotta
means, “keep working and protecting what you are working is for. ” It has been going from
strength to strength since it first started in 2002. With the help of Evan Del-Franco, her
dedicated and valued co-designer, SADOS is a label determined to take the fashion world
by storm.

This 24-year-old designer, who won the Alternative Fashion Week Award and Young
Fashion Designer of the Year Award 2003, grew up in Russia before coming to the UK to
study Fashion at the American University in London. With the ability to speak several
languages, a distinguished style and intriguing confidence, its easy to see why she
decided to set up her own fashion label immediately after graduating.

For someone so young and talented, one would think that she comes from a family that
celebrates fashion, however Carlotta informs me that her parents are not in the fashion
industry. Yet, it was from the tender age of four when she began to embrace fashion and
all it represents.

Knowing what she wanted to be at such an early age led my to ask her to elaborate on
which designers have inspired her. She smiled knowingly and said, “Marketing-wise it has
to be Armani. Style-wise Vivienne Westwood, and of course Jean Paul Gautier just
completely inspires me”. With such big names inspiring such a talent, it becomes easier
see her Autumn/Winter 2004 collection from different angles. She informs me that her Fall
collection was inspired by “nature and movement, and also by traditional costumes”,
before smiling shyly and admitting that most of collections came to her in her dreams.

Still discussing her Autumn/Winter Collection, we moved on to the colours and fabrics she
used. This is a topic which Carlotta is passionate about and she explains that the
inspiration for her Fall collection are seasonal colours. “My last collection was nature
inspired so I used a lot of browns and beige.” I then ask her about her use of heavy and
light suedes that dominate her collection, to which she replied, “Well, part of the reason is
that a suede company sponsored my collection. If you also look closely at the other fabrics
I used, you might be able to see that I used tea on the fabric to give it an old time effect!”

Carlotta’s collection features a jaw-dropping corset outfit composed of beige tones, which
she explained was the most difficult piece of the whole collection. She also explains that
the completion of that particular design gave her “a sense of achievement and is by far my
favourite piece”. This prompted me to ask Carlotta who she markets her designs for. “Both
men and women can find something in my collection. Age-wise 20-45, because I feel that
my designs can be both trendy for the young buyers and elegant for the older ones”.

I then ask the 24 year old what she found to have been the hardest hurdle to jump. “When
I came out of university I found that it is indeed a very different world to what I thought it
would be. The real world is a harder nut to crack. That is why it probably took me 2 years to
reach profit level after I started by own clothes line.”. I found myself nodding in
agreement, because I am sure that we all have, at some point, been fresh-faced graduates,
eager with the feeling of the world being at our feet only to enter the ‘real world’ and to
soon come crashing straight back down to earth. I then asked her what advice she would
give to a new designer coming up in the industry. With a knowing smile of someone who
has been in the industry for decades, her answer was simple and to the point. “Do not fall
into the trap that everything will come easily once you graduate. Be realistic and you won’t
be disappointed. Oh yes, and don’t be afraid to ask questions!”

With our time coming to the end I asked the final question, what is your fashion forecast
for 2005? With a confident laugh and a final drag on her Malboro Light she reveals, “Next
year’s Autumn/Winter colours to look out for are wild berry colours and also the
combination of floral prints. Look forward to embracing Romantic meets Extravagant”. With
those final wise words the interview came to a close. It was then I realised, as we said our
goodbyes that the name Carlotta Gherzi will soon be rolling off our tongues with great
ease in the not too distant future.

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