A&E Interviews: Travel and Textiles with Adriana Iglesias

Lara Mansour   |   14 - 07 - 2016

Adored for her attention to quality colourful luxurious fabrics, Adriana Iglesias collections present a mix of silk dresses, tailored pants, skirts and jackets incorporating delicate animal and floral print. Elegance and sophistication are paramount throughout the Spanish designer’s pieces, with comfortable, luxurious pieces for the youthful contemporary woman. We chat with the well-travelled designer and founder of the eponymous fashion label, about must have places to visit and packing tips.

Tell us about how your label began? Is this something that you had always dreamt of creating?

I have been in love with fashion all of my life, and I love art together with all of its expressions. I love to paint, to play piano and violoncello, and I love ballet. However, I spent 15 years working as a Telecommunications Engineer, but at the end of the day I was not very happy. I really think you cannot do great things if they are not coming from the heart and soul, so I chose to work on what I liked the most. One day, more than two years ago now, I decided to change my life and I started with a very personal capsule collection for my daughters and myself, and I really enjoyed doing this. It was expressing myself and our lifestyle, and people liked it very much, so I decided to go on and since then it has been non-stop.

Your new collection has a combination of both bohemian luxe and minimalistic simplicity. How would you describe the Adriana Iglesias customer and her style?

I only design what I would wear, and I feel good wearing feminine, but comfortable clothes. I think my clothes bring a message of elegance, sensuality and beauty, promoting at a high level the perception of femininity. So I would say the Adriana Iglesias woman is elegant, feminine, positive and sure of herself. She enjoys fashion but does not sacrifice to trends, and is a woman full of energy.

How do your Spanish roots blend with the style of the Middle East?

I think the Mediterranean in all of its aspects, acts as the point of union.

Has the Middle East always been a region that you have wanted to branch into?

I am more than sure that if you want to be someone in fashion the Middle East is a place to be. The regions represent a fascinating world and market with people who want to purchase beautiful, high quality and well-made products. When I visited Dubai for the first time I really fell in love with the elegance of the women. I love to see women in the Middle East living their lives with lots of different traditions and personal styles, including the integration of the social codes of the region and the form of individual expression. I strongly respect tradition, as I think it is the foundation of a strong sense of national and regional identity. As a foreign brand I will always have this in my mind, dressing women whilst staying faithful with their traditions. I just dream about women wearing my pieces and appreciating the spirit of the brand all around the world.

Many of your collections have been based around different areas of the world. Is travel very important to you?

Yes! Actually I cannot imagine a life without travelling. I cannot remember a journey that has not somehow changed me. In life we are either worried about our past or anxious about our future. It is hard sometimes to be in the present. But when you travel, your mind is there, you experience so much for the first time without any effort, and you’re present in the moment. This is why you are open to new cultures, new people, religions or way of life. You’re forced to challenge preconceived ideas, expand your awareness and be introduced to greater diversity, which in turn helps you to know yourself better. As I put my soul in my work everything is really coming from me, and everything is reflected in my collections.

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What inspires you and your designs?

Actually I am attracted to nature itself, I find inspiration there most of the time. I cannot observe flowers and colours without a smile, as I think floral prints transmit beauty and optimism. I breathe the Mediterranean from every pore of my skin and all of my collections reflect my personal life and this includes my travels.

The collections are like a story written in line with the different seasons, while the prints are inspired by this focus on the Mediterranean Sea. I am in love with life, so as I design I do what comes from the very inside of me. Vibrant colours from nature inspire the designs, from flowers I remember in Hvar, to the intense blue of the Sea in Duvrovnik, or Santorini.

Tell us about a favourite place that you have visited and your memories?

If I have to say just one, it would be Tulum. The natural peacefulness, gentle breezes and the hypnotic sounds of waves crashing against the white sand, make it a really great place to stop your mind. You find a simple tranquillity there at the small and intimate eco-friendly beachfront hotels. I really loved that spot and I had a great time there with my children.

Where is next on your wish list to travel to?

My bucket-list is as big as the world. There are a lot of places I have been to in the past before having my children, and I would really love to go back with them as there is something very special about living it again with them. The Polynesian Islands, for instance. Also the Hotel du Cap Eden Roc in Antibes. It is a true garden of Eden in the Mediterranean where privacy, luxury, glamour and charm combine with perfection. No words really do justice to the beauty of this place.

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Implementing iconic vintage paisley patterns, Adriana Iglesias’ AW16 collection embodies Far West meets early Eastern symbolism in a kaleidoscopic array of prints.

What is your top tip for summer holiday packing?

Roll up each piece of clothing to get more space in the suitcase and avoid creasing.

What is your must have travel accessory?

I cannot travel without a pashmina scarf, as I need it very much due to the air conditioning on the plane, or in hotel lobby’s.

by Eliza Scarborough

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