Ivan Fotesko: “When you see my thing, you can clearly say that it is Fotesko…!”
IF is a brand that knows how to be self-sufficient, sexy and elegant. Therefore, I met with designer Ivan Fotesko and we talked about fashion, career, how he came to the fashion industry and much more.
1. Vanya, when did you first realize that you would be a designer?
I had many options for who I want to be, but the key point was that I accidentally got into the Art-Podium model school. Then the modeling business was not so popular, but it was really prestigious and cool. They took all my friends on karts, but they didn’t take me. I was thin, long-haired and, thus, did not fit into the format of the models of that time. Then all the guys were embossed, inflated, and I was offended that they didn’t take me. Then I decided that I needed to be a designer and select models myself. In 2006, I already started my design studies. I still meet Lena, director of the Art Podium, and we joke about it.
2. You are young enough, but behind your back participation in various shows, fashion weeks. Do you make a list of goals for yourself or does everything happen spontaneously?
At the beginning of my career, I tried to make a list, but it looked ridiculous when you already have to sum up, and everything does not go at all as planned. Children’s ambitions are always much more than they can be in reality. Therefore, goals are built like a schedule in Fashion Weeks – I arrange shows twice a year, plus additional intermediate collections and shows. But, as such goals, that at this very moment I will be this or that, then there is no such thing. It just doesn’t make sense, everything goes on as usual.
3. Now it has become very popular to collaborate with public people, bloggers, photographers. Do you have such experience?
Before the term “collaboration” became popular in Ukraine, I was engaged in collaboration, but it was called differently. I have a very wide experience in this, even, you can say more than anyone in Odessa. I’ve worked in China, designing a denim collection, working with people who are starting new brands, collaborating with artists and photographers. But, in fact, the collaboration does not bring anything if it is not supported by a common interest! If we single out cooperation, then only with China it was fruitful, because I was paid a good salary. And, if we talk about cooperation with artists, then I was preparing the first conscientious collection with Nadia Dorofeeva. We are friends with her, and therefore, it was all on a light note, but it did not bring any development for me. Because this kind of work takes time from my personal brand,
4. How long does it take to create a new collection?
Differently. The fastest collection is the last one. We made it in a week and a half completely! This is a fantastic time frame. Of course, if we talk about the preparation of artistic and mental, then it was carried out much longer. Sometimes, even when creating one collection, I’m already thinking about a new one. Ideas nurture in my head usually for six months. Fortunately, I have a good team, where all the professionals and we can quickly create everything.
5. Do you still adapt to world trends or rely purely on your own opinion?
The most important thing for a professional designer is to be in the center of world fashion movements, art news, cultural events. The designer must keep his finger on the pulse. Then his ideas will keep up with the times, because the ideas of any designer are based on world global events. Therefore, being in Ukraine and not being able to get out to New York, Milan, London and other cities, you need to at least browse online news, collections of other world designers and take note of interesting moments. I am one of those who view the collections. I look through about 70 percent of the collections, seriously reflect on what I saw, and analyze it. If you look at the Michael Kors collection, the things that I did in February almost fall into the design. Of course they are different! But, the approach to choosing an image is similar and it pleases me,
6. Who is your favorite designer, role model?
It used to be Alexander McQueen and John Galliano. Now it is the Balmain brand. I look at the collections of this brand and they make me happy. Everyone else is surprised, because now is the time of uncertainty in design. Collections are created not to emphasize beauty, but more to emphasize unusualness. The more bizarre the thing, the more people want to buy it! And not because she emphasizes the figure better! Balmain still supports femininity and elegance. As a man, you perceive these models, you want to look at them and aesthetically delight you.
7. Do you often give away things from your collections?
It used to be more common, but now it’s very rare. Basically, I can give things to artists I know. Now we are reducing this practice, because even artists buy things from us. After all, a business should be a business and make a profit. Moreover, artists also earn on their image, so why not pay?! Oddly enough, but it is the novice artists who think that they should be given things, and those who have already taken place do not think about it and just buy. Apparently, they are aware of the value of money and labor.
8. If you look at yourself as a designer, how can you describe the evolution of the brand over the past 5 years?
I always try to look at myself from the outside, even the most skeptical of myself. I know that the brand develops, acquires a quality look in the face of fans, we acquire new, more sophisticated, fashion customers, and we can surprise them. Now my style is more clearly emerging, if earlier it was a set of various samples, now one direction in movement is being traced and this cannot but rejoice! When you see my thing, you can clearly say that it is Fotesco! And it’s nice!
9. What is Fotesco brand?
A mixture of classics, sports and futurism (futuristic clothing). My clients understand fashion, they dress up to date and they want to be self-sufficient, elegant and sexy. Exactly, my clients are part of my brand!
10. Is it better for a designer to have his own showroom or multi-brand sites?
It’s always better to have your own. And it’s better when the designer remains human to the end, because when you are personally present in your showroom and a new client wants to get acquainted with your brand, then you can present yourself and your brand better than anyone else. Now there is such a large selection of things that people want to buy not just a thing, but a story. Financially, it’s the hardest thing to keep your store running. But you can start with an online store and proceed from this. In a multi-brand boutique, as practice shows, the client is most often lost, and there are no sellers who could describe each designer equally beautifully. A lot of sales are lost just because you can’t be well represented. Therefore, no one will introduce you better than yourself! No matter how successful, well-known designer you are, you still need to communicate with clients personally.
11. Where are you represented and maybe something is already in the plans?
The showroom, where I personally communicate with clients, is located in Odessa on 23 Rishelievskaya Street. We also sell in Odessa at Cocoon Space. In Kyiv, this is My Fashion Store, Shop911, there are departments in Israel.
Welcome , my friend! I’m International Journalist and I write travel news, fashion articles and make interview with interesting, public persons from the all world.