Andrea Coli, Founder and Creative Director of Benevierre
Andrea Coli is the designer of Benevierre, a brand that combines tailoring with pop-style graphics. Its products, worn by personalities of the Italian jet set such as: Morgan, Luchè, Tommaso Zorzi and Boss Doms, are able to represent personalities and styles that are at the antipodes.
Hi Andrea, welcome to Wait! Can you tell me a little bit about your background?
My passion for clothing most likely comes from my father. I have always had my ideas on fashion and not being able to find garments that satisfied my tastes, at about 16 yo I started buying fabrics to have shirts, pants, sweaters and much more made by some seamstresses. At the same time, on Saturday evening, inside a couple of clubs, I painted t-shirts by hand with acrylic paints, drawing at the request of “customers”.
I have always designed garments and then had them made until I was about 23 years old; when I was about to graduate in languages, I asked a tailor if he could help me learn to sew by hand and by machine. I spent about 6 months in his atelier embroidering buttonholes by hand, stitching the inner lining of coats and sewing buttons.
Once I graduated, I decided to continue with my passion and I created Benevierre, my clothing brand.
You said that the passion for clothing comes from your father. Do you think its influence is still reflected in your creations?
I don’t think so, we have quite different tastes. His has always been a passive but positive “influence”. In clothing as in life in general.
What is the main inspiration in your creative process?
Honestly, I think I don’t have a main source of inspiration, I rely on my life. I note my thoughts and reflections by hand in a notebook that I always carry with me. I take about ten photos a day of anything that can make me think of a clothing piece, any source of inspiration, which I then save in an album on the phone. I really like art and history, especially the 20th century. The union of all of this creates my collections.
“I like to think and say that the most beautiful collection will always be the one of the coming season. In any case, they all made me cry and rejoice”
Let’s focus on Benevierre, do you want to talk about the origin of the name and how the brand took its first steps in the market?
The name Benevierre is the result of a return trip on the highway, Milan-Pesaro. I wanted to find a name that could be both elegant and sophisticated in pronunciation. I left Milan and around Forlì, I wrote the name “Benevierre” on a post-it note.
During the launch of the first collection, I was late with the times. the production company made a mistake in printing one of the textures of the prototype, they made a mistake in a leopard print which, instead of being printed all over, was discontinuous. I lost a month of sales campaign, but still got a good result. The first regions where I sold Benevierre were Emilia-Romagna and Campania.
We have seen that you have created three collections: zelotipia, galatia and macedonia… Are they linked by a Fil-Rouge? Which of these gave you the most satisfaction?
I hope and think I have conveyed the same thought in the three collections, for me it is important that each collection is traceable and has a common thread with the previous and the next. So yes, all the collections are linked together. I like to think and say that the most beautiful collection will always be the one of the coming season. In any case, they all made me cry and rejoice for different reasons, but they all gave me the satisfaction I needed to go on and draw more.
I want to ask you some more specific questions starting from one of my favorite pieces, the “multihearts” shirt. I’m curious to know the technical characteristics of the garment, how and where it is made!
The “heart” shirt represents for me reality and life. Two-tone shirt, black and red with whole hearts and broken hearts. Apparently simple because it has only two elements: two hearts. It represents the cyclical nature of love, of moods … Human cyclicality. Simple but at the same time with a deep meaning.
All Benevierre garments are made in Italy by artisan workshops. Also in this respect I always try to give continuity to my path, continuing the process of manual production of garments with care and obsessive attention typical of every craftsman like me, from cutting the fabric to ironing and bagging each shirt.
Do you think craftsmanship can contribute to a more sustainable fashion system?
Absolutely yes. I think that craftsmanship is synonymous with care, attention and knowledge.
It should be the foundation of every company, the foundation of every person. We should all be craftsmen, in human relationships, at work and in life in general. We all should touch firsthand, deepen and respect in the broadest meaning that the word can have.
For the last question, let’s look to the future! What are the next projects in sight for Benevierre?
In January, “Narciso”, the fourth collection, will be released. There will be news in terms of garments, materials and shapes. I can’t thank enough all the people who work with me on this project every day, at crazy hours and without days off.
Often we look far, we also rightly look to the future, almost underestimating what we have built step by step. I am the first to do this, inevitably, but I am well aware of what we have built so far. We are evaluating different options in different areas: from collaborations to new markets. The next few months will be intense, as always fortunately, but could lead to further and good news.
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