I meet Angelia on a windy winterish day on the last days of May.
I’m welcomed by a warm and positively chaotic personality, showing a big smile surrounded by some piercings on her face, which make me instinctively trust her.
Angelia is very young and only at 25, she put a company carrying her name together, working every day on getting better and doing what she likes.
She comes from the northern province of Monza, but in her mind (and in real life) she’s often far away.
After a path at Marangoni, she did her first presentation at Showcase in January 2018, later FashionHub, and finally selected by Who’s On Next to present her collection at AltaRoma.
She talks of her brand as NOMADIC, for very feminine women who never stop dreaming.
Amanda. Hello Angelia. The first thing I would like to ask you is where your exotic name comes from.
Angelia. My full first name is Angelia Maria Vittoria Ami. Angelia should be pseudo-Russian, coming from a Russian aunty who probably never existed. Ami should mean ‘beauty exists’ in Japanese.
Amanda. How did your love for making garments start?
Angelia. I come from a very serious family, everyone has a very serious 9 to 5 job.
I remember drawing on the little schools’ desks when I was in kindergarten, it was my everyday hobby. Later on, I started downloading every possible image on earth on my house computer. I have the memory of downloading a fashion sketch once and starting to draw potential looks on it. I still have all these drawings hanging in my childhood bedroom on the walls. I am still compulsive about downloading thousands of images, it is part of my daily life.
Amanda. What were your first pieces which you still produce today?
Angelia. I have a big love for everything which is “capospalla”.
Actually in my very first collection, returning from a trip to Africa, I was really into those heavy Masai blankets. I got some sent to me and realized some coats with them. Everything which is I do is an expression of what I like and buy at that moment. Probably the only pieces I purchase are blazers and accessories.
Amanda. The names of your pieces are really funny. I read “Gianni blazer, Orazio Trench coat, Matteo dress”. Who are they?
Angelia. These are the names of people and animals part of my life. Beloved dogs, cats, ex-boyfriends, you name it. Everything works and is interchangeable. Teodoro the wrap top (my cat) and Ettore the shirt (my dog) are the most beloved by clients. Luigi, the romantic cat, is a hearty pullover.
The only reason why I still come to Monza is them.
Amanda. Who would wear Angelia Ami in your dreams?
Angelia. I’m very much sure that my target has a very large range. 25 to 55, from me to my mother.
She has to be very diagonal and every piece is made to be comfortable and fitting to the body naturally. Everything she wears gives her something and she gives something back through the piece. It is a relationship.
Talking about physical characters I would tell you, Juliette Binoche, for instance, her idea of a woman is very part of me. Chloe? Savigny’s too. Leandra Medine would be perfect as well, why not. It is not a standard, but they all share the same aspirations.
Amanda. What excites you the most about your job on an everyday basis?
Angelia. I like everything which comes before the actual ‘event’. The preparation, in my job, is everything. Working with others is not just necessary, it is really what the business is about.
Once, before the show, a friend of mine spontaneously helped me to vacuum 400 invites before a show. That’s real love to me.
Amanda. Are there some movies you would imagine your clothes in?
Angelia.The First Wives Club, What Women Wants, Notting Hill and Bridget Jones.
Amanda. Your most beloved places?
Angelia. India, particularly Jaisalmer, because nothing compares to that kind of beauty and culture. New York and London for the sense of freedom they give.
At the moment also everything Nordic European. Very fascinating and smart.
Amanda. Where do you imagine your clothes in the city you’re actually in, Milan?
Angelia. I think of them in a house full of memories, collections, objects from everyone and everywhere. A home-museum would be ideal.
Amanda. What would you have done if you weren’t doing what you are doing today?
Angelia. I would work to help animals and to give them back what they gave me. I met my dog when volunteering in a doghouse. The biggest desire of mine would be to help refugees, but that would be a full-time thing, taking on your life and quitting any other job. Who knows, maybe in some time… Life always brings surprises.
Amanda. Do you like to travel solo?
Angelia. I once walked the “Via Francigena” with my dog. Milan-Rome.
Quite an experience, not being a very responsible owner. Full of tragedies and funny stories. Firemen rescued us from a river one day. Pretty intense.
Images courtesy of Angelia Ami.
Words by Amanda Luna Ballerini.