Mélina Carbonaro's fashion design trajectory


© Charlotte Lapalus

The Mediterranean, Italy, and films from the '60s and '70s rhythm the inspiration for the lines of Mademoiselle Socialite, created in 2014 by Mélina Carbonaro. Her collections play with the French fashion codes for « effortless » glamour, and take a fashion design trajectory influenced by La Dolce Vita. 

Fashion and the Mediterranean: How would you define your Mediterranean-ness?

I feel completely Mediterranean, which has a direct effect on my collections. Born in Italy and having always lived in the "Sud", I have an image of women and the clothes they wear which is very solar. A sensual woman, at ease with her body. My collections celebrate that; dresses, silks and a lot of lace. I make clothes imprinted with femininity, garments that you can wear from morning to night, chic but effortless, like the one-piece, a model that I change for each season. 

What has the M Major competition brought you?

The M Major allowed me to make some extraordinary contacts with professionals with very eclectic backgrounds and a global vision of the fashion world. It is a precious aid for an emerging label like mine. There is also a personalisation of the advice given to each label. We haven't got the same objectives or the same constraints, and in this sense it is a real success. The M Major also provides a greater visibility for our work and helps us develop more quickly. 

What is your flagship piece?

I would say the one-piece. Depending on the season it becomes a trouser combi or a shorts combi. For the 2016-17 Autumn-Winter « Jolie Dame » collection it becomes dungarees made out of crêpe…

Has the internet changed your relationship with fashion?

Yes, clearly. Before launching the Mademoiselle Socialite label, I was already using the internet for my fashion purchases on multi-brand sites and getting information off specialised fashion sites. Facebook and Instagram remain incredible means of communication for a label. It changed everything. Now every label has a web site or and e-shop. I think you can't exist nowadays without the internet. You come in contact with a different customer base, and international customers as well.  

© Charlotte Lapalus

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