In the world of fashion, sustainability has become an increasingly important aspect of design and production. Many designers are looking for innovative ways to reduce the use of synthetic fibres as well as upcycling existing garments to create environmentally conscious collections.
We recently caught up with Alessandro Tondolo, award-winning designer and Central Saint Martins graduate, to talk about his final collection, what inspires him and how he incorporated Ventile Recycled into his creation.
What is the inspiration behind the collection?
My collection is named Coharesco, which in Latin means ‘Growing together’ or ‘Connecting with one another’, and in simple words the inspiration came from mushrooms.
I wanted to link my designs with nature and how we, humans, can learn from it. When I look at mushrooms and the way they interact with nature, how they try to help each other out through the mycelium, creating networks around them… I wanted to reflect that.
I studied the agricultural systems, learning about the mistreatment of the land and the impact people can have. Therefore, my design practice tries to show interconnectivity. I think we must learn how to work together, humans and nature, helping each other.
Working with Ventile Recycled
As much as I love fashion, we all know how unsustainable it can be. My idea was to change that, and one way of doing it was through the use of the recycled fabric that Ventile provided me with.
I also did a lot of upcycling, taking garments that are usually seen as waste or easily discardable, and transforming them into something desirable and interesting. I worked with items that were near the end of their product lifecycle and change their narrative. The idea was to take waste and turn it into something new and beautiful, just as Ventile does with its recycled cotton.
How did you learn about Ventile?
I have a friend from Manchester who taught me about the brand. He was working with the textile too and recommended it to me. My collection is based on zero synthetic fibres, so I tried to find alternatives to be more sustainable without losing any functionality; that’s where Ventile appeared.
I am half Mexican, half Italian but I was born in Switzerland. While I was back home during the summer, I decided to write to the Ventile’s team – without knowing they were based in Zurich! Daniel, Ventile Brand Director, replied to me asking if I wanted to meet up and provided me with materials. It was nice to see all the amazing possibilities the fabric brings, how it is made and the history behind the brand.
On the future
As for the future, I am currently working freelance while also working to develop my own brand. I don’t have the investment yet, but I am working on it!
In terms of my collection, Coharesco, I am looking at ways to make the garments more approachable to everyone without losing my DNA, the essence that is behind every piece, and make them more widely available.
Check out Alessandro’s latest creations here!