A fashion designer who ‘chose crazy’ | ET REALITY


It was during Paris’ first pandemic lockdown that fashion designer Marco Ribeiro felt he had reached a creative turning point. “I thought, ‘I can choose between two paths,’” he recalls. “ ‘Either very commercial’ (but no one was buying anything at the time and no one knew how long that would last) ‘or very crazy.’ “I chose madness.”

In 2019, the Brazilian, now 35 years old, moved to Paris after 11 years in Buenos Aires, where he sold hand-painted bags and clothes, mainly to friends, launched his first women’s clothing line, a collection. of minimalist and custom pieces. But he never really felt that the work reflected him: where he came from or what he wanted to convey. His post-pandemic collections, which he showed for the first time last year, are structured with the same rigor, but they are also exuberant, with outsized ornamentation and dramatic silhouettes: skirts with exaggerated pleats and large, flat circles of fabric worn as either capes or tube dresses. Instead of the previous drabness of it, there are blocks of color, bold stripes and a clash of florals and plaids.

The clothes caught the attention of stylist Harry Lambert, who works with Harry Styles; The pop star wore Ribeiro’s bright mosaic flares to promote her latest album, “Harry’s House” (2022), and subsequently asked the designer to collaborate on her beauty line, Pleasing. Ribeiro also began dressing artists like the actor. Emma Corrin and the bossa nova musician Céu.

His clothes, Ribeiro says, are inspired by the elemental geometries of Brazilian visual artists such as Hélio Oiticica and Lygia Clark, and the architect Oscar Niemeyer. But they also reference the artisanal techniques of their late grandmother Layla, who helped raise Ribeiro and his younger brother. She adorned bedspreads, pillows and kitchen appliances with the same fabric rosettes that Ribeiro now places above her breasts and between her legs. She allowed him to enroll in modeling school at age 12 after a talent scout discovered him in his hometown of Petrópolis, and helped introduce him to fashion when she brought him to her job as a housekeeper. . According to Ribeiro, dressing Barbies with his employer’s granddaughter was the first time he put fabric on a body. “The brand is really a tribute to her,” he says of her grandmother. “She would be happy to see the man I have become.”

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