A conversation with Giuliana Leila Raggiani

giu giu SS16

Created by Giuliana Leila Raggiani, New York based giu giu, is inspired by the simplicity of natural textures, collage, travels and exploration. giu giu is a knitwear-focused label conveying the playful humor and offbeat freedom that life should embody despite one's age or gender.
                                                                                         
Please explain your creative process when you start designing a collection. What is usually the starting point?
It really varies each season, but I think I'm most receptive to color and texture. It's usually a specific shade I stumble upon that strikes me a certain way.  Then the palette and inspiration develops from there. 
Beautiful detail shown here at  giu giu SS16.

Tell us more about your AW 15 collection. Where did you find inspiration?
From all over. The color direction was inspired by Gustav Klimt's " Le Tre Età Della Donna" (1905) - a piece that holds much sentimental value for me. I grew up in intensive ballet, so the silhouettes of collaging delicate fine gauge with chunky knit layering were inspired by the "off-stage" dancer, conveying that laid-back, almost accidental aesthetic.
At the same time, ballet movement carries such a poised and perfect quality, so the matching sets gave this collection some structure and linearity. The stitches and patterns in the textiles were inspired by a new meditative doodling technique I've been practicing called "zentangling." 
 
Zentangling
Giu Giu AW15
 
Can you please tell us a little about your philosphy on beauty, style and well being.
It may sound cliche but I really do believe "beauty is in the eye of the beholder." A person's perspective is completely unique, which is amazing. Bending rules amuses me and the unexpected tends to grasp my attention. High fashion is often viewed as this pretentious thing, so I like to create quality garments that are beautiful, yet inspired by something comical or seemingly "ugly." Contrast is important to me. It helps me stay neutral. 
 
 
Do you have a uniform you tend to wear daily?
The cashmere/cotton knit suit-sets are my usual go-to. It's like baby clothing for adults, which is really the ideal uniform. Being comfortable is rule number one. 

Pas de Deux is ballet allusive and is a sleeveless jumpsuit (convertible roll-down top)
 
What are the things that are upsetting you in the world right now? And what are the things that are making you happy?
Negativity and closed mindedness is an epidemic, which in general over time has steered us into a direction of lack of peace. It all stems from the basic concept of choosing fear over love. On the positive side, I do feel our generation is turning a new leaf. As we become more creative, we become more accepting. There are less boundaries and "rules" these days, and I'm constantly meeting people all over the world that follow this mentality. It makes me happy and hopeful. 
 
 All photos by Kara Kochalko
 
giu giu website and online shop
 

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