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Nov 16, 2022

Call them Young Designers and they will hit the market

Every young designer dreams of creating a collection to show to the biggest players in the industry, from press to buyers, and then sell to prestigious retailers. So, when Istituto Marangoni alumni Gian Marco Caggiari and Ivan Christov were appointed Young Designers, they had to pick their jaws up off the floor. 

Istituto Marangoni alumnus Gian Marco Caggiari on his experience 

Stepping back, Istituto Marangoni renewed its partnership with CSM-Camera Showroom Milano and brought back the Young Designers project. In collaboration with the Milan showroom circuit, the initiative aims to create a system between players in the luxury commercial network, with Milan as its undisputed world capital. Of course, this is a highly relevant deal, as distribution is a critical factor in a brand’s striving for success – that’s why Istituto Marangoni chose to be CSM’s academic partner once again.

But what about this second edition? It was staged last month as part of the CSM Meets Sustainability event in collaboration with Confartigianato Moda, with the City of Milan’s patronage and Camera Buyer’s support. And the spotlight shone on Istituto Marangoni alumni Gian Marco Caggiari, a 2021 Fashion Design & Accessories graduate, and Ivan Chistov, a 2019 graduate in Fashion Design. Produced by a Confartigianato partner company and marketed by the CSM network, their capsule collections were showcased during the latest Milan Fashion Week.

“The partnership with CSM is the first step towards a system strategy that Istituto Marangoni has embraced with enthusiasm to be able to promote the school’s young talent internationally,” stated Stefania Valenti, managing director of Istituto Marangoni. “The selected designers can now count on the support of qualified Italian manufacturers and showrooms with an international reach to launch their collections and boost the Made in Italy supply chain with fresh and innovative ideas for the market.”

Intrigued by their path, we caught up with these two Young Designers to get a little insight into their work.

With an innate passion for quality raw materials and craftsmanship, Gian Marco Caggiari works with natural yarns to create responsible products. His capsule is “a tribute to holidays in Capri, an ode to the Costa Smeralda and the Italian Riviera, and a revival of La Dolce Vita. It is all about this idea of an idyllic summer in the name of dolce far niente.” 

Caggiari’s capsule includes essential pieces, from tops to polo shirts, dresses, jackets and skirts, trousers and cardigans. Almost all the items are monochrome, with blue reminding us of the sea and orange tones and vivid shades of fuchsia bringing to mind the sunset. With the divas’ vintage tennis or boat suits informing a wardrobe of silhouettes inspired by the 70s and 80s, each piece was crafted exclusively using natural yarns by Alma-Knit.

“This special project is great for young designers who want to start their own business in the future, as I plan to do,” Gian Marco Caggiari stated.

An interview with Istituto Marangoni alumnus Ivan Chistov 

With his Jonas brand established right after graduation, Ivan Chistov conveyed his futuristic vision of fashion, the human body and sustainability in the capsule he created for this project. While his black&white colour palette is minimal, slim-fit silhouettes are combined with structural tailoring. As one of the most notable highlights, Jonas’ 3D knitwear can be worn as a first layer for a second-skin effect or as a one-piece bodysuit for an empowering look. Last but not least, these 3D knitted garments result from an ethical approach to fashion: a seamless technology that transforms all yarn into a product, 3D knitting reduces fabric waste by up to 30%.

The Jonas capsule collection is both functional and easy to wear, with comfort at its core. Not by chance, an open-hole mesh is strategically used for those parts of the body where the temperature is highest, making the garment extra breathable.

“I feel it is extremely significant for young designers to be introduced to buyers. As an event taking place during Fashion Week, this opportunity is even greater,” said Ivan Christov.



Clementina Bianchi,