I went to a market appointment recently and came across the designs of Mathieu Mirano. From first glance at the clothes that was gracefully hanging from the rack there were fur coats, heavily embellished evening gowns, and structured blazers.
My immediate thought was that this designer must have been in the industry for years, it was an apparent mature collection for a mature customer that many designers may take years to do.I was immediately informed he has shown his first collection at Mercedez Benz Fashion Week this past season at the age of 20.
I became immediately attracted to how this young (very young designer) designer gained the skills and craft it may take some designer years and years to achieve.
Were there any difficulties starting your own business and building your brand?
For sure! Building the right team to create a couture level collection was and continues to be difficult. Every member of the team has to understand exactly what the collection means, how it needs to be created and presented, and who is going to wear it. The connection to the clothes needs to be natural. Not everyone is going to understand your vision and you can't force people to get it! You just need to push forward and find the ones who are meant to be with you during your creative process, a process that is very fragile.
With your background in music does that influence your design process?
Absolutely. Music is my starting point when I am creating. When I am listening to a beautiful piece of music, I get this intense need to be creative. It flows right through me and mentally transports me to a different place. This is the place where I conceptualize anything and everything for my designs. It's a deeply personal state of mind that I have developed throughout my years as a musician, an artist, and most importantly, adesigner. I am really lucky that my dad forced me to practice all of those hours now! You don't understand it as a kid, but I now have a great appreciation and respect for musicians and their work because of him.
It takes years and years for a designer to show at MBFW and you did it at 20 years old, what else do you want to accomplish in your career?
It would be the pinnacle of my career to create a real couture collection. Couture has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. I'm very young and it's certainly not in my near future, but someday I would be honored to show with the greats!
Can you describe your aesthetic in three words?
Polished, graphic, refined.
If you weren't a designer, what profession would you have?
If I wasn't a designer, I would be in the circus. People are so surprised when they hear that, but it's true. I was a gymnast for a long time and dreamed of joining Cirque du Soleil but I had some issues and injuries that didn't allow me to do that. I pushed myself so hard that it threw me out of the game. Not to mention that I'm 6'3 and still growing! I was incredibly passionate about it, but now I am doing exactly what I want and need to be doing- designing. The reason that I loved Cirque so much was because of not only the physical aspect of it, but also the beauty and detail of the set, the costumes, and the show itself. Funnily enough, the exact same thought process that goes into Cirque goes into creating a collection. As a designer, I get to tap into an infinite amount of mediums, a lot of which are seen as a gymnast or in the Cirque. But even if being in the Cirque was a possibility, I would never trade being a designer for anything! It's my calling.
Can you give any hints for your Spring/Summer ‘13 Collection
Well I can't give away too much, but this season comes from more of an intellectual place, as opposed to last season, which was more emotional. What I will tell you is that the collection is rooted in prehistory. That's it! Any more and I'll get in trouble!
Do you have advice for young designers who are much younger than you?
You have to believe in what you're creating, no matter what it is. If you don't believe in it, what are you doing it for? I'm incredibly lucky to get the opportunity to do what I do and everything I put out on stage is something I believe in 100%. Understand your point of view, develop it, and believe in it.