Every year the fashion industry is on the lookout for the fresh-faced designers that meet their standards. Adrian Arnieri a young Ryerson student has a presence like no one I’ve ever met. He is able to walk into a room and make it a little bit brighter with his award-winning smile and bigger than life personality. Even though he is young in age, he is fiercely passionate for design and is continuously thriving to become better with every stitch he makes.
His passion started earlier than most, “As a young boy around the age of four I would spend a lot of my time drawing, not that I was any good at it! Most of the time I would go through my younger sisters Barbie doll magazines and try to redraw the gowns Barbie would wear. That is were it all started I guess.” Surprisingly enough, although he started sketching at a young age Adrian didn’t start sewing until his later years in high-school when it was time to apply for colleges “I had less then two months to learn how to sew and create these outfits.... I worked really hard and learned super fast! I got my three outfits in and ended up getting into the fashion program.”
And it is looking as though that hard work has paid off. Without a thought he and a friend joined a fur design class not expecting anything to come out of it; but it took a turn when he submitted his sketches along with other designers to the Remix-Canada fur design competition. With an imagination that would give well known designers a run for their money, his designs has earned him a well deserved winning title in the international fur competition. Representing Canada he will be headed to Montreal for the display of his fur coat. For some it is art and other it is architecture. No matter what you do in life there is always something or someone that inspires you, that makes you see even the tiniest of creations in a whole new light.
For Adrian he is constantly being inspired either from the classics with eye-catching colours such as the Little Mermaid to the very famous musicians ranging from Spice Girls to Lady Gaga. “Lady Gaga’s clothing choices have opened my mind to a whole new level of fashion. She sees fashion as a form of art and I couldn't agree with her more. There are no wrongs or rights when it comes to designing clothes and Gaga has helped me express myself though my designs.” Even with the hustle and bustle of the busy campus my focus was solely on Adrian.
He spoke with such enthusiasm and love for what he does it made me happy to think there are still people with a fire inside of them that drives them to become who they’re meant to be. As he was showing me his designs I noticed that they were bold and inventive, piquing my curiosity how he dealt with given school assignments that often have specific guidelines and may limit his creativity. “[…] When it comes to assignments I often bend the rules because I feel my designs need to be taken to another level. (…) Because my designs don't follow the guidelines of the assignment I end up having to take a mark deduction. I wouldn't have it any other way, if I changed my design I wouldn't be happy with it and it would no longer be my vision.”
If I could, I would have given him a standing ovation but a verbal appraisal would have to suffice. There are so many artists that lose the passion for their art that they started with because they feel the need to conform to what is said to be right or wrong. Although being in a design program can be restricting, it gave him the ability to learn how to bring his designs to life and make them into tangible pieces of clothing. Which in my opinion is the most rewarding part of the process, the finished product.
Humble as always he explains to me that yes school can help you create something from nothing but you can also learn a lot from yourself. People need to continue to try new things even when they may not turn out to be what they expected and learn from their mistakes. Every single one of them. Despite having two more years of school get through mentioning the future and working for a fashion house earned me a bright smile.
“I would absolutely love to work for any fashion house that would take me! That would be a complete dream to work for one (fashion house). It would also be a dream to create my own fashion brand, which I would love to do one day. It kind of seems funny to say but my ultimate goal is to keep making my visions come to life and to expand my creativity. I know something amazing will happen if I make myself happy by doing what I love. Which is fashion!” Nothing seems funny to me, only inspiring.
For someone that is nineteen years of age he truly is wise and when asked about the best advice he’s ever received, I couldn’t have asked for a better answer. “(…) I feel like in a way I give myself the best advice. I think it's important to be your own cheerleader and to make yourself happy first before anyone else. If I'm not happy with my design or with what I'm doing at that moment then I'm not going to give 100%. I know it sounds like I'm full of myself but I just feel very confident with my designs. If I didn't feel confident with what I create then I wouldn't be creating them (…).”
With his drive for success and positive attitude that has the ability to fuel the sun; I’m certain that we will be seeing Adrian Arnieri in a few short years from now taking over whatever area of fashion he wishes to claim.