For years, Anna Dello Russo has attracted the biggest swarms of street-style photographers and paparazzi at Fashion Week across New York, London, Milan, and Paris – chances are that whenever you hear cameras clicking frantically, she’s nearby. Dello Russo’s fearless aesthetic and willingness to have fun with fashion have made her an enduring style icon whom brands love to dress because there’s almost nothing she won’t try.
This time around, Dello Russo lends her enthusiasm, energy, and design acumen to Italian luxury brand Tod’s for a collection packed with delightfully quirky elements. Bags are folded at the sides so that the silhouette forms the ears of an elephant’s smiling face, while shoes are upholstered with cartoon clowns and glamorous lips in the new Anna Dello Russo x Tod’s ‘Circus’ collection.
Go behind the scenes to see how it came together in this video exclusive on Savoir Flair, above, and keep scrolling to see what she had to say about her icon status, her relationship with Tod’s, and more.
What does the circus mean to you, and what sort of circus atmosphere were you aiming for with this collection?
When you go to the circus, it’s like entering a parallel world. The same goes for fashion; it allows you to transform into something new. With his makeup and masks, the clown turns normality on its head. I wanted to create a collection centered on this theme of metamorphosis, disguise, and – above all – entertainment. As a result, there are loafers that smile, bags with feathered hair or elephant’s ears, and sneakers with bright eyes featuring on the laces! There are symbols and interpretations in an eternal play of personalities.
What accessories are included in the collection? How long did it take to produce them?
Bags, charms, sneakers, loafers, and iPhone covers – the ideas just kept coming! The characters instantly came to life with recurrent colors, patterns, and faces, just like in a nursery rhyme. It took a whole season to choose the materials and details, and then produce the collection.
How did you reconcile Tod’s first-rate craftsmanship with such a playful theme?
It was great fun. Tod’s artisans were brilliant, meeting our every request for embroidery, inlays, and hidden details. That is why each piece has such a unique personality.
What is the ideal look for the accessories in the ‘Circus’ collection?
These are the perfect accessories to jazz up a casual look. But – as I always say – more is more, so what could be better than a fun bag with elephant’s ears for a glitzy evening look?
How would you describe Tod’s as a brand?
Season after season, Tod’s is synonymous with first-rate, all-Italian luxury.
As an Italian woman, when did you wear your first Tod’s accessory?
Very early on, actually – it was a pair of ‘Gommino’ loafers!
What creative process leads you to choose the looks you wear? Do you start with the outfit or the accessories?
I start from a story, a mood. Sometimes the inspiration comes from shoes, sometimes a hat, sometimes an outfit. It’s never just one thing, but an overall idea.
As a fashion icon, what do you think is the difference between the Italian and foreign approach to luxury and fashion?
Nowadays, luxury speaks an international language. I have had the privilege of working in Italy and Asia for more than a decade, and have always believed in a crossover approach. Fashion luxury is a unique code that speaks every language.
How do you become a fashion icon?
By changing 100 looks a day – even in the car between one destination to another!