I want to tell you a little about my passion for Africa and for dressmaking, two pillars of this brand.
Africa, our mother earth, its population and the inherent values of its culture, so ancient and profound, have always fascinated me.
The disposition of African people, the diversity of its states and their traditions are mirrored in their clothes, jewellery, food, music. This combination of aesthetic and moral values has always been a great source of inspiration for me.
I started buying African fabrics and jewellery a few years ago from a dear Senegalese friend of mine, in Rimini, where I live and work. Wax prints have inspired me to design clothes and have them made. And magic happened. Wearing these articles of clothing, I understood very soon that they carry a great moral, emotional and historical power.
I did more research on African fabrics and I fell more and more in love with them. I discovered a wonderful world full of history, tradition, religion. All the patterns on the beautiful cotton have a meaning and these fabrics are like open books that you can wear.
The world of wax prints made me increasingly enthusiastic, so I began to look for retailers all over the world and I started buying fabrics without a clear project in mind. But I didn’t have to wait long. I designed skirts and gave them African female names. All models are named after women; it’s fitting since it’s women who are going to wear them.
I wanted to celebrate and highlight feminine elegance by combining Italian design with these eccentric fabrics. I didn’t want to launch yet another brand in the already saturated apparel market, which has a partiality for low costs, labour exploitation, distribution rules, sales and whatnot. I wanted to do something different, something real.
Then it was time to give a name to the brand: Annasumisura. Anna is my mother’s name, one of the most elegant women I’ve ever met. When I was a child, she had a seamstress make all the clothes for the entire family, children included. I loved going with her to fabric shops, where there was a unique smell and where words would have an unfamiliar sound to the ears of a child: brocade, chiffon, crinoline, organza, houndstooth, gabardine, piqué, poplin, Glen plaid, tweed, velour. I felt like I was in a temple and she knew everything.
Every skirt will surely display the personality of the woman who wears it. The result is an article that highlights every figure, handmade by Italian seamstresses with wonderful African fabrics. That’s how I wanted to enhance dressmaking, precious artisanal work.
It certainly hasn’t been easy and still isn’t, because I haven’t taken a big leap and I haven’t left my office job in accounting, a job that I’ve been doing for many, maybe too many, years (who would’ve thought?). But every day, I get messages from my clients: they tell me how happy and satisfied they feel when they wear such an exclusive and personal article of clothing and this motivates me to go on with determination and a smile.
So, what are you waiting for? Wear a skirt, leave the house smiling and things will go the right way!