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Designer Spotlight | Serena Orlando

Q & A with Serena Orlando

How do you think the fashion industry can improve?/How will Covid-19 affect the future of fashion?

I think the fashion industry is going through a major shift and I don’t necessarily think that it’s a completely bad thing. The silver lining of it all is that people are realizing what truly matters in the industry and how we can move on from fast fashion and focus on sustainability in the future.

Who are some of your favorite designers, fashion writers, stylists, photographers? Some of my favorite designers that I look up to are, Paco Rabanne, Jacquemus, Charlotte Knowles, and Proenza Schouler just to name a few. Any of the stylists that belong to The Wall Group are some favorites (check them out on Instagram for some major inspo! @thewallgroup). Fashion photographers that I love are, Andy Jackson @anndyjackson, Dan Roberts @danrobertsstudio, and Grace Rivera @_gracerivera. How have you been able to keep in touch with your creative intuition while coping with Covid-19? At first, it was hard and I started working on my collection a little bit each day until I found myself working from morning until night and enjoying it! Now that my collection is finished, I decided to make some matching accessories and have even started new projects as well. I think in times like this, we almost don't have any other option that to let our creative side take over and see where it takes us! What is your collection about? My collection is based off a family trip to my dad’s home of Palermo in Sicily, Italy this past summer. I met 30+ relatives for the first time and it was amazing but I was also hit with that uncomfortable feeling when it came to communicating due to the language barriers. My collection displays traditional and beautiful pieces with a hint of disruption or something unexpected to convey the feelings I faced when trying to communicate with family. How did you use “Voices” in your collection? I used the theme “Voices” in my collection quite literally in the form of language, more specifically, language barriers. From growing up not speaking the same language as my Nona, to meeting family members during that trip to Italy, I was able to recognize the true beauty of using your voice either through language or the alternatives. My Nona was a seamstress in Italy, so we we’re able to share that passion for creating clothing without using our voice. Have you had to pivot and change your designs? I haven’t had to change my designs much. I just had to accept the fact that some of the garments wouldn’t be clean finished on the inside because I didn't have access to the machines that I had at school, but I made it work.

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