Designers Matteo Lamandini

By Stefano Guerrini

 From Modena, born in 1989, studies at the Marangoni Institute that lead him to a MSGM internship and to a period in the style office of Marni. Then for Matteo Lamandini the victory in 2014 at a competition like "Designer for Tomorrow" that allows him to start with a collection under his name, as well as draw a capsule for Tommy Hilfiger. With his MATTEOLAMANDINI collection, the young designer has been a constant presence in the last few seasons of Pitti, where he was the protagonist of one of the Alternative Set in June 2016. He is now back in Florence, but as one of the finalists of the prestigious "Who Is On Next?". We interviewed him to learn more about his creative world and the inspirations for his work.


When did you first approach fashion and when did you realise that it could become your job?

My first contact with the world of fashion dates back to my early years studying accountancy, as I chose that path because I liked how bankers dressed, so what I might have worn in a future job. Then came studies at Istituto Marangoni, followed by first place in the Designer For Tomorrow competition and that was the moment when I realised that this direction could bring the results I hoped for, so I founded the MATTEOLAMANDINI brand.
Can you tell about your line’s main characteristics? What makes it stand out?
All my collections start from a formal base and then denaturalise and contaminate this with elements drawn from the street, from streetwear.
One of the most important characteristics is how I use fabrics, as I always try to choose them from the world of formalwear, reworked on garments belonging to the street and vice versa, with street fabrics on formal clothes. The collection always features contrasting oversize and slim fits.
Where do you get inspiration for your work?
My inspiration often comes from travels in big cities, with inspiration for my first collections coming from Edinburgh, Berlin and New York. I think that the street is the linchpin element, the starting point for examining trends, and then contaminating them with your own ideas and artistic currents to complete the picture.
Your ideal of elegance?
I think that the concept of elegance is interpreted differently by each one of us; personally I don’t interpret it in a classic way, but in how I wear my clothes. Already the fact of having your own style for me is synonymous of elegance; mine is, like I said before, a mix of streetwear and formality, therefore achieving the right equilibrium between two apparently opposite concepts.
Your ties with Pitti Immagine Uomo. Did you already know this show? Do you have any special memories or anecdotes?
From the start of my studies at Istituto Marangoni, it was always a go-to event, as a spectator obviously. From the beginning I saw it as a very important event and, if I were to set up on my own, I absolutely had to participate in it. Once I founded my brand, the first stage in fact was my taking part in Pitti Uomo, which saw me there from January 2016. 
You are one of the "Who Is On Next?" finalists. Who of the past entrants do you feel closest to and like?
Of past entrants, the one I feel closest to is Andrea Pompilio, not so much for his style, which is not exactly the same, but for what he conveys with his collections. I also really like Lucio Vanotti and Umit Benan, whom I believe are great talents.
Emotions and expectations about being a finalist?
I didn’t expect it, and I am so happy to have reached the final, as I can see that the work done so far has been appreciated. Comparing yourself with other brands is always stimulating, both for personal growth and also for development of the brand.
Dreams and projects for the future?
As far as projects for the future are concerned I aim to expand the market and get my brand known in places where I am not yet present, so to widen my commercial network, which started a few months ago with my e-commerce linked to the website and hope that WION is a launch pad for reaching my objectives.