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A woman in command, an interview with Rossella Jardini
Rome - (Adnkronos Multimedia) - The figures demonstrate a success dating back to close on twenty years. Sales totalling 61 million euro for 2003, following a year of stagnation in 2002; induced sales amounting to 240 million euro; a sustained high growth rate over more than two decades; three-quarters of earnings coming from abroad; 24 boutiques in all the major cities in the world and 35 shop-in-shops and corners in the most up-market department stores on the planet. This is the economic picture of Moschino (www.moschino.it), one of the best-known designer labels for Italian fashion in the world. Heading up Moschino now, together with Marco Gobbetti, the Managing Director, is a woman, Rossella Jardini, 52 years old, from Milan, who has been the artistic director for this famous fashion house for more than ten years.
How does one get to be "a lady of fashion."?
Above all by working hard. I met Franco Moschino in 1980, when I started to work for the Cadet fashion line. It was one of the first Italian prêt-a-porter designer labels, and Franco was the designer. The company changed hands more than once, and I left them as also Franco did in the end when in 1983 he decided to leave Cadet to launch a new label of his own. He called me to join him a little while afterwards in 1985. Since then this has been the story of my life, and I stayed with this label and that extraordinary man".
Please tell us about Rossella Jardini's first steps. What is the doorway into the fashion world?
"I began almost by chance. I had two friends who were modelling for various fashion houses of Milan. They decided to set up on their own, and founded a small company. Through them I got to know Moschino, and it was a decisive meeting. Moschino was a genius in the fashion world. He knew how to take a chance on an idea for a product and he had imagination for the future. When he died in 1994 he left behind him a huge empty space and a great stock of memories. I learned everything I know from him. I owe everything to him".
What is the secret of the growth for the Moschino label in a sector where dozens of new labels appear every season?
"At certain fashion shows I realise that I have never even heard of many of the designers present. It can happen that some of these will be successful but most are forgotten. Why? The simple fact is that fashion is a very difficult job. Talent is required, professionalism and experience. Talent, and the ability to create: these are qualities that can be had by many. Professionalism, which means being able to build up a style, a label, a company, a product which satisfies the needs of the clientele is already much more difficult to find. Lastly, experience derives from one's work and one's own passion. It is often said that there are no young people emerging in the fashion world as in the past But this is inevitable, because to enable a young person of 25 years of age to get ahead there has to be someone to act as a guide. And I had the good luck to have this guide".
What would be your choice between quality and stylistic creativity?
"Both, obviously. I am old fashioned. I am a fanatic about quality: stylistic creativity has no future without this. Despite the loss of Franco, Moschino has really progressed because of this policy, because we have succeeded from all points of view in providing a quality product: resistance, wearability, durability, choice of materials, garment assembly. Without all this, the Moschino label would not have met with success".
Moschino exports three-quarters of its production. What are the most important marketing outlets, and the most promising?
"The United States is the main foreign market for Moschino, both for women's clothes and accessories as well as for men's. In Europe we sell a lot in Great Britain, France, Spain and Greece. With regard to the most promising markets, the most successful Moschino boutique now is the one in Moscow. Russia is a market in continual growth and one which is taking on an ever greater importance".