Spring - summer 2011


Carlotta Actis Barone’s designing style is always political in direction and focused on true social matters. Her graduate collection featured 8 looks taking inspiration from the theme of Feminism, particularly the suffragette movement from the beginning of last century. Her pieces are directed at strong, feminine women that believe in a liberated female condition and strive for gender freedom by paying attention to their fascinating bodies and forms, which she learnt to appreciate profoundly through her studies in figure drawing Fashion Mode have teamed up with Carlotta for her new collection, entitled “wear my skin” which aligns her political views and her designs. This collection is based on the fight against racism, particularly on the deportation of Africans to America before the 1865 civil war. This collection has been designed to demonstrate the cruelty of those acts, and attempts to translate the victims pain and suffering into something that everyone can experience through wearing the clothes. The colour palette is based on a range of skin colours from each human race, allowing the exchange of shapes and colours to allow different races to get into someone else’s skin. In Carlotta’s words; turning rags, chains and scars into high-fashion clothes allows the use of our bodies to communicate the shame from all acts of racism either past or future The collection features rich drapery and cuts inspired by the worn, knotted and over-sized appearance of slave’s garb as they toiled in the fields. The shoulders on the pieces become very wide and structured to imitate strong, muscular shoulders and denim dungarees, typical work clothes, are transformed and reinvented into oversized trousers supported by braces, sliding down the hips and revealing parts of the body previously hidden. The fabrics are humble simple shirt cottons, like the cotton grown on the plantation fields. Femininity is exalted as it emerges from the details of a man’s working shirt which once enlarged, becomes a dress or top.The colour palette of the collection is dominated by the shades of the human skin, from light to dark, to represent the men and women who have suffered the indignity of slavery. Wearing these clothes will be like wearing another skin.