Stefania Frangista, the designer behind the luxury swimwear brand, bearing her own name, obviously has a passionate love affair with time.
Never late for an appointment, always appreciating every second of every hour, knowing her next step, never appearing in a rush, but always moving fast, in order not to lose a minute from what could be either done or deeply enjoyed. Because she knows exactly what she wants and what she needs, as well as the fundamental difference between the two. Looking every challenge dead in the eye, giving it a wink, she speeds up through the industry gracefully, just like the car she was photographed with. Did I just say “speeds up”? Oh, yes, she also loves speed.
[She received her BA in Liberal Arts from Brown University, RI (2006) and an AAS Fashion Studies degree from Parsons New School of Design in NYC(2008). And she gained experience in fashion at the shoe design departments of Alexander McQueen, in London, Michel Vivien in Paris, and Calvin Klein in NYC.]
Having grown up in Greece, all she ever wanted was to capture the magical sensation that she had always felt especially during summertime, and share that magic with the world.
“It was my way of sharing my love for the what I feel is so unique about the Greek summer: the Greek islands, the Greek sea and sun, the characteristic summer sounds and smells, the unique culture and customs, and the special people one meets along the way.”
But it’s not only about the fabrics used, that are of the highest quality, feeling heavenly on one’s skin. Offering women swimsuits that will feel wonderful on their bodies only means that she spends as much time designing the style of each swimsuit, as she spends attaining to the perfect fit, correcting the patterns over and over again.
That’s what constitutes luxury: the attention to each and every detail.
But if you asked her, what is the ultimate luxury, she would immediately answer “time”. Time for yourself. Time to indulge into simple pleasures. Time to share with those close to your heart. Time spent doing things that make you go “hmmm” and smile. Just like driving that gorgeous white Porsche 718 Boxster. “Oh, this was a deep pleasure”, she says smiling.
ON PERSONAL STYLE
Who is your favorite fashion designer in the world?
What perfume do you wear?
JO MALONE Wood Sage & Sea Salt.
What watch do you wear?
I stopped wearing a watch when I was 18.
Which are your favorite colors?
White, black, greige.
Which fabric describes you and your personal style best?
Name the woman you have looked up to, while growing up. Who inspired you to be the woman you have become?
My grandma, she was very educated, sophisticated, oh so stylish and at the same time so much fun.
What is the first thing you would teach your daughter, in things style?
Less is more.
Name the most stylish woman (dead or alive).
What inspires you the most for your designs?
Designing swimwear– was it a wish from your childhood days? When did you know that this is exactly what you wanted to do?
My dream was to become a fashion designer and I remember having it since I was about 13 years old. While studying at Parsons in NYC, I realized my passion was to design shoes. But when time came to launch my own company, I decided to start with a swimwear line, since I felt that there wasn’t really any luxury designer swimwear brand to represent our famous Greek summer and so I thought it was a great opportunity.
Is the Greek -heritage-influence visible in your collections? As part of who you are?
My Greek heritage is a huge part of who I am but I would not say that it is visible in my work in a traditional way. On the contrary, I think our market is quite saturated with lovely brands of a very Greek aesthetic and I have purposely avoided that.
How important are the components/materials used? What really constitutes luxury, when it comes to exquisite swimwear?
Very. When I choose our fabrics, they must be the very best. A luxury swimwear brand cannot use anything but the softest, most resilient, and special fabrics coming from the best mills of Europe.
Who is really the woman in your imagination/creation process? What does she look like? How does she think?
The woman in my imagination is a fictitious one, an amalgamation of women that I am fond of at the moment. She is a quite sporty, stylish yet minimal, educated, sweet, funny, but also driven woman and …she is wearing reading glasses (!) don’t ask me why!
What can we expect from you in the future? What will be different?
I think you should always expect better and better! I am constantly working on our evolution as a brand! Every season I like to pick a different mood for our collection and a unique environment for our campaigns. I don’t ever want it one collection to look the same as last years, that would be boring no?
Where do you imagine yourself to be ideally in –say- ten years from now, professionally speaking?
Oh difficult question… Ideally I would like ‘Stefania Frangista’to be worn by women in 100 different countries around the world..and I would like to start another brand sometime within the decade, experimenting with something I have never designed before.
ON CARS AND GIRLS
What kind of driver are you?
I used to be a fast one, now I focus on being a smooth one.
Do you enjoy speed?
I do, but I get uncomfortable over 180.
Describe the perfect car, the perfect time of day and the perfect soundtrack when driving towards your favourite beach.
Porsche 550 Spyder 1955, silver. It ‘s 8pm, sun is starting to set and I am listening to Ben Howard “The Fear”, while driving towards my favorite little beach on the Athenian Riviera.
What does the word PORSCHE bring to your mind?
Cool, classy, and fast.
Which is your favorite model of all times?
Porsche 550 Spyder 1955 in silver.
Is it the destination or the distance driven that counts?
Depends on what is the car you are driving 😉