It's almost upon us! Adrian J Mizzi reveals what’s in store this Malta Fashion Week
Adrian J Mizzi / Facebook
The Maltese Fashion Scene is booming, and there have never been more professionals in the sector - from photographers to models, editors, designers and stylists. This wasn't always the case, however, and it wasn't long ago that you'd be hard pressed to forge a career in the industry without venturing abroad to do so.
21 years ago, Adrian Mizzi founded the Malta Fashion Awards. With no sponsors, a tiny budget and by roping in some friends in the entertainment industry at the time, the first ceremony was held in a Bugibba hotel. Two decades later and the Malta Fashion Awards are the highlight of the year for fashion lovers all across the islands, and an award in each category is highly coveted!
Last year's spectacular awards ceremony at Valletta's Triton Fountain have got us wondering how Adrian Mizzi can possibly top 2018's extravaganza. We had a chat with the man himself to see what he's got up his sleeve...
Archive Photo / Malta Fashion Awards 1998
What is the history of Fashion Week and the Fashion Awards?
"This year we will be hosting the 21st edition of the Malta Fashion Awards. The event started 21 years ago as a small closed event featuring hair stylists and some bespoke pieces from local dressmakers. After some years, it became obvious that the industry had grown to a point that the event could extend over a longer period of time and Malta Fashion Week was born. This year the events will run from the 22nd May up until the 31st - 10 days hosting between 2 and 3 shows per day."
Why are Fashion Week and The Fashion Awards important for our culture?
"What many are unaware of is that fashion has traditionally always held an important place in the hearts of Maltese men and women. In the past, women travelled to Italy to purchase fabrics and ensure that what they wore upheld the latest fashion trends. Every occasion was a reason for which to get all dressed up, including a simple dinner. The Malta Fashion Week and Fashion Awards have encouraged and provided a platform for the local industry to thrive. Maltese designers are given a chance to showcase their work to both the local and international audience, Maltese makeup artists, hair stylists, photographers and influencers are also being given this chance to reach a wider audience, gain recognition for their work and also collaborate with their peers."
Last Friday's Launch Party - Malta Fashion Week & Fashion Awards - Kurt Paris / Facebook
"There is also the cultural aspect to consider, and this year, once again, the events will extend between the farthest two points of the capital city, from Triton Square to Fort St Elmo. This allows us to uphold and celebrate both the national and international aspect of our capital, Valletta, showcasing fashion in our exceptional city and its heritage sites."
What has been the standout moment in your career so far?
"Watching the Malta Fashion Awards grow, recognising its potential and seeing the event evolve into what is now a 10-day long celebration of fashion, with thousands of attendees. This has been an incredible journey. Last year we celebrated the 20th anniversary at a unique location - Pjazza Tritoni. The feeling was incredible, and one I hope to repeat or perhaps even better this very year."
What makes you proudest about your input so far?
"Seeing the glow of satisfaction in the designers’ eyes, especially if they are new, and watching people enjoy themselves and have fun during all our events. I work in the entertainment and artistic industry, so giving opportunities to others is my goal."
Last Friday's Launch Party - Malta Fashion Week & Fashion Awards - Mark Soler msphotography / Facebook
What can we expect from this year's Fashion Week and Awards?
"You can expect to witness some new and incredible collections from both our local designers and international guests. We also have some exciting permanent exhibitions throughout the week. Parties and receptions will also be a big part of our schedule."
"This year we have reinstated the New Designers Show. For a period of time, we felt that this show wasn’t being used to its best of its potential and that the participants applying were not ready to showcase at Malta Fashion Week. This year we opened up applications once again and we were pleasantly surprised with the quality of some of the applicants. There is much more to say but we don't want to give too much away!"
Last Friday's Launch Party - Malta Fashion Week & Fashion Awards / Facebook
What do you think about the fashion scene in Malta nowadays?
"The fashion scene has evolved rapidly. It gives me great pleasure each year to realise how the audience has grown, how the dress codes have evolved and become more individual and how the crowd is showing a keen interest in what is being presented."
"We still need more participants in industry though. I wish to see new photographers break out of the mould, and new models coming forward and especially new designers."
Thank you Adrian! We can't wait to see what you have in store for us this year!