the story behind
Read the full story behind the Italian luxury label Alanui in this interview. Siblings Nicolò and Carlotta Oddi, the founders of Alanui, share their candid insight about their inspiration, atelier and future plans.
What was the initial idea behind Alanui? How did it all begin in 2016?
“It all came by chance, with that iconic cardigan from the seventies found in a flea market in Pasadena. This cardigan joined on a trip to Hawaii, sharing with us all the precious moments and adventures we had during that journey. We immediately understood that this could be an idea to conceive a luxurious version of that and to pervade it with our personal connotations and values. Alanui means “large path” in the Hawaiian language; each Alanui piece is meant to be an emotion-charged garment, the perfect travel companion, which gets better and better as experiences grew.”
How would you describe the aesthetic identity of Alanui?
“We always try not to define Alanui with precise words or not to stick to a precise aesthetic. In general we think of Alanui as something emotional, open-minded, creative, passionate and season less.”
Where does the inspiration for the Alanui collections and colorful yarns come from?
“Nature, travelling, colors, landscapes, books, stories, characters. Everything that moves us and gets to us.”
“Alanui piece is meant to be an emotion-charged garment, the perfect travel companion, which gets better and better as experiences grew.’’
How did you get into the world of fashion? Is it something you were always interested in?
“We were born right outside of Milan, so it was pretty hard for us not to get involved with fashion. We always saw our mother looking at fashion magazines and getting dressed up. I (Carlotta) then got a degree in interior design and a master degree in fashion design, I’ve always been interested in aesthetics and creations.”
Who is your ultimate style icon of all time?
“I love Janis Joplin, she had the coolest looks, but I also think Daria Werbowy’s ability to dress so simply and elegant is amazing. Regarding male style icons, the unforgettable David Bowie and Mick Jagger.”
How do you want people to feel when they wear Alanui?
“Free, unconventional and a globetrotter. Thye should love the quality and the luxurious feeling, but in a very understated way.”
The oversized cardigans are crafted in the finest Italian cashmere. What makes this material so special? And how does the production process look like?
“Cashmere and knitwear in general are very special to us. We are trying to improve our products using new techniques and patterns. From sophisticated jacquards to crochet and needle-punch, we are always very excited to work on new products and discover what it will look like. Knitwear is like a white canvas you can paint with your own imagination and creativity.”
““Cashmere and knitwear in general are very special to us. We are trying to improve our products using new techniques and patterns. From sophisticated jacquards to crochet and needle-punch, we are always very excited to work on new products and discover what it will look like.”
How does a day at the Alanui atelier look like?
“It’s like a non-stop creative workshop! We are after new ideas, creating and researching for the brand. There is always a good vibe that we get from all the colors and patterns from the collection.”
What is your greatest accomplishment with Alanui?
“The greatest accomplishment is starting with a single cardigan and now having a total look and accessories in such a short period.”
Alanui could be the perfect travel companion. Can you give some inspiration on how to wear the oversized cashmere cardigan?
“I wear the cardigans over a sweater or under a coat during winter but I also love to feel the cashmere on my skin during summertime over a swimsuit or a silk dress. Alanui is adaptable for a boho, grunge and rock style, it’s impossible to describe it as just one style.”
Any future plans with Alanui you would like to share?
“We would love to create an Alanui lifestyle, following the spirit and philosophy that originated the brand. We started a collaboration with Greg Lauren, mixing our styles, and another collaboration with Superga will be launching soon.”