Born in Modena, studies in art in Bologna and then in fashion design at a prestigious school such as the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. Omar's debut in the fashion system has been creating paper patterns, but the love for his work, the desire to do something on his own and a precise aesthetic sense led him to launch his brand, first introduced in June 2016. And after just a year Omar is one of the finalists of the important contest "Who Is On Next ?, organized by Fondazione Pitti Immagine Discovery and promoted by Pitti Immagine Uomo in collaboration with Altaroma and L'Uomo Vogue. We learn more about Omar in this interview that he gave us on the eve of the event.
When did you start in the fashion business and when did you realise that you could make it your profession?
I was born into fashion, thanks to my mother who has worked as a pattern-cutter at Gianfranco Ferré since I was tiny. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, I realised a little late that it could be possible future for me. I have always been passionate about drawing. Ever since I was little, I enjoyed being on my own creating “sketches” rather than playing. As an adult I studied fine arts at the Accademia di Belle Arti, but after experimenting with everything I realised could express myself best through clothing.
Tell us about the principle features of your range. What distinguishes it?
I like to mix various elements and styles without identifying too much with one genre, yet I strive to remain coherent with my concepts. I have chosen to point my range in the direction of “refined streetwear”, if that’s what we want to call it. My intention is to create experimental outfits, which can also be worn every day. I like bulky shapes that cover the body, giving it another appearance.
Where does the inspiration for your work come from?
My Inspiration? It is difficult to explain. My work method is fairly unusual for the fashion world, I don't put together mood boards with various cut-out images, they would influence me too much. Usually I start with a concept, a colour, an atmosphere from a book or from an assembly of various elements, often highly contrasting. I then start to draw, without over-analysing, until the ideas begin to crystallise. It is a kind of “stream of consciousness”, as it would be termed in literature. Finally, I choose to develop some designs and, little by little, it all takes shape, acquiring new concepts. In one sense I am lucky there is a time frame to respect, otherwise my collections would never be completed.
What is your concept of elegance?
Elegance is a difficult concept to define, especially today. In my opinion the greatest elegance comes from being at one with your clothing and being timeless. For example: Yohji Yamamoto.
What is your connection with Pitti? Did you already know about the trade fair? Do you have any memories or stories linked to it?
Yes certainly, I had already heard about this trade fair, although unfortunately, I have never had the time to observe or study it properly. I don't have any particular memories, but I can say that I find watching the visitors fascinating. It’s like a real interactive catwalk show. I could find a seat and just watch people go by for hours.
You are one of the finalists for the menswear edition of “Who’s On Next?”. Out of past participants, who do you like and who do you identify with?
I like several of them, but more than anyone I have a bond with Daria Dazzan and Matteo Cibic from the 2011 edition. For starters, Daria is a good friend of mine and, consequently, also Matteo, but she and I started studying at the same time at the same school.
What are your feelings and expectations in being a WION finalist?
I am really happy to be one of the finalists in WION. I have been wanting to participate for years but I never got around to it. Also I hope, as I imagine all the finalists do, to be one of the winners, not so much for the thrill of winning but mainly because it could be a push in the right direction to get my brand name known to a wider public. In reality, even the fact that I am among the finalists and am presenting the collection at Pitti is a fantastic starting point. All in all, I am very happy.
What are your dreams and projects for the future?
First, I would like to create a team of co-workers that I can really trust, which would allow me to dedicate myself completely to designing without having to think about all the rest. I would like to create a Haute Couture line (unisex) with a new sales system and with prices that are accessible to the wider public, and finally, to create my own perfume.