VENTURINI FENDI ON CAMPUS: Germans have always had a soft spot for sustainable fashion, so perhaps it was a perfect match for The Corner Berlin to play host to Ilaria Venturini Fendi’s socially conscious luxury brand Carmina Campus during MBFWB. Fendi, who prefers the term ‘re-used’ rather than recycled for the source materials she uses, showed off her brand’s bags, jewelry and home decor items to a select group including the Italian ambassador to Germany, Elio Menzione.
“What I like most is changing the function of something,’ said Venturini Fendi, pointing to the shiny metal polka dots studding cheerful handbags from the Carmina Campus ‘Space Waste’ line. In a previous life, they were soda can bottoms; rectangular metal panels fronting clutches were once light switch panels. “It looks playful, but it is hard work,” she said of the lively patterns and styles.
Carmina Campus, founded in 2006, is named for the historic farm Fendi bought on the outskirts of Rome, and grew into an organic paradise complete with goats and bees. The farm’s bounty was shared on a cheeseboard with guests at The Corner’s soiree.
In Berlin, Venturini Fendi was wearing her own jewelry creations, including lacquered and jeweled earrings which started life as soda can pull tabs, and a chic cuff combining reclaimed leather and metal, proving one woman’s trash is another woman’s opportunity. She recalled that when she started her brand, she thought she’d quickly be joined by other industry types making the eco-friendly leap, but lamented that this had not been the case. “Carmina Campus is like a pioneer in this world,” she said. “Now it’s more difficult to change in fashion.”
Carmina Campus products sell for around $300 to over $2,000 and are also found select stores including Dover Street Market Tokyo, Takashimaya and 10 Corso Como Seoul, and at the brand’s own Re(f)use store in Rome.