Fausto Puglisi’s confident, energetic style is a brash shake up of richly-researched cultural influences sewn up in impeccably crafted packages. With a modern attitude and frisson of sexiness, this original fashion combination has had combustive results, quickly drawing the attention of international editors and buyers and catapulting Puglisi into the spotlight as one of the industry’s brightest fashion talents.
Puglisi’s work is a study in bold contrasts and reflects both his Italian origins as well as his fascination with all facets of American culture. Born in Messina, Sicily to two school teachers, Puglisi was soon entranced by the twin fashion sources in his small home town: the traditional tailors who carefully made his grandfathers’ suits by hand and the local boutiques, brimming with stars from the Italian 1980s ready-to-wear scene, where he spent most of his teenage afternoons.
Seeking new horizons, Puglisi moved to America in 1999. He informally began his career designing a small, self-assured collection that Messina’s local tailors produced for him. He lived in New York, Texas, and eventually landed in Los Angeles where his early designs were picked up by the influential boutique Maxfield. Simultaneously, his work was spotted by renowned stylists Arianne Phillips and Patti Wilson, and the designer began to forge important ties with some of entertainment’s most creative forces.
The Fausto Puglisi label took formal flight, however, back in Italy. In 2010, Domenico Dolce & Stefano Gabbana invited Puglisi to be part of their retail project Spiga 2 which featured a mix of young, unknown international designers. Puglisi’s merchandise sold out within days. The momentum pushed him to start showing his designs at intimate presentations during Milan fashion week. Puglisi vision’s crystalized into edgy, sharp tailoring tingling with a maximal touch, a style that embraced couture-like gowns and technical wizardry with as much passion as a pair of jeans.
Puglisi’s success was swift. In 2012, he created costumes for Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. at Madonna’s Super Bowl halftime show. That same year he was appointed artistic director at the famed French Maison, Ungaro, debuting on the Parisian catwalks in March 2013 and successfully re-launching the label to international markets. By October 2013, he was on the Milan runways with his first full scale Fausto Puglisi show.
Puglisi’s unique creations are informed by the romance of the past, but are twisted with a modern cadence to create a high caliber ride. The classicism of ancient Roman sculptures, the opulence of Baroque architecture, the hedonism of Bacchanal or even contemporary Hollywood revelry, and the quiet reserve of 1950s couture, are all continuous fruits of inspiration. The women who Puglisi adores, and those that adore him right back, are cut from an equally broad cloth that span 1950s screen icons to today’s most controversial, yet strong-minded women.
Fausto Puglisi is currently sold in over 160 boutiques world wide, including Bergdorf Goodman in New York, Selfridges in London and Joyce in Asia.