Recently featured in British Vogue, emerging Italian fashion designer, Franco Vernica has a passion for design and a dedication to Italian craftsmanship. His luxury handbags and shoes range from the colorful to the intricately detailed. All of his pieces are exquisitely handcrafted in Italy with the finest of exotic animal leather, like leather, stingray and crocodile. Franco takes the time to discuss his design inspirations, love of his native Rome and his new Spring/Summer 2014 handbag line.
W+D: Fashion lovers are now starting to pay attention to the fact that Italy can and does produce emerging fashion designers. What does the Franco Vernica brand represent?
Franco Vernica: For women my brand represents elegance, sophistication and beauty. For men it’s bold with a touch of chic.
W+D: You’re Italian! It’s home to so much… beautiful art, architecture, food and la dolce vita. It’s also where many of the world’s most coveted fashion brands originate from. How are your designs and collections influenced by the Italian culture?
Franco Vernica: For me Italy is my heart. My designs are influenced by la dolce vita more than anything else. And that is because for me Italy makes me feel alive!!!
W+D: You spend half of your time in your home city of Rome. What do you love most about it? Where’s your favorite place to go when there and how do you incorporate these “loves” into your designs?
Franco Vernica: I love everything about Rome. I love the Coliseum and the piazza by the Vatican the most. I get ideas from what people wear and from what I see around me, and from other designers too of course. You can’t say no to a Valentino! Italy is full of inspiration you just have to look around you.
W+D: If you had to pick a favorite piece from your SS14 Cristina collection which one would it be and why?
Franco Vernica: I would have to say my red, black and white Marta tote which I made for my wife. It’s not for sale and not on the market, but I will be debuting it in fifteen bright colors this week. Why? Because it’s bellissimo! That is the only way I can describe it.