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The art of designing clothes is so much more than stitching together a piece of clothing. Being a fashion designer comes down to being imaginative. And when you talk about renowned fashion designers, one name that always stands out is fashion designer Carla Zampatti. She was among the crop of designers who believed in bringing revolutionary, meaningful changes in the fashion industry with her unique style.
Who was Carla Zampatti?
Carla Maria Zampatti was an Italian-Australian fashion designer and entrepreneur. Her designs were noted for being charming and practical. She ruled the fashion industry for 55 years and died at the age of 78 on 3 April 2021. Her death came as a shock to the fashion industry and other prominent personalities. She was considered a symbol of the Australian fashion industry.
In 1950, Zampatti migrated from northern Italy to Fremantle. She was proud of her position as an outsider. She frequently praised Italians for their contributions to Australian society, including their food, culture, business and hard work. She also thought that Australians had significant Italian ancestry.
What helped Carla become a top fashion designer?
Carla first landed in Australia at the age of 8. As she grew up, she identified a gap in the Australian market. She felt clothing could be more practical, without foregoing the aesthetic. Her love for design compelled her to express her ideas through clothes.
Carla’s designs always glorified simplicity and were marked by strong, clean lines with an Italian aesthetic. Her designs were both classic and trendy. Carla Zampatti was committed to environmentally-friendly business methods. Throughout her career, she supported Australian producers and collaborated with Ethical Clothing Australia.
Carla always believed in inspiring women to feel confident, and elegant through her remarkable design, tailoring, and knowledge of fashion. Her ideas, philosophy, thoughts, lifestyle, etc. contributed to her journey of becoming the renowned fashion designer Carla Zampatti, as she is remembered today.
Carla’s Unique Style
- Carlas’s early work was vibrant, graphic and bohemian. Many of her clothes captured the spirit and topography of Australia, with their bold lines and earthy tones.
- Zampatti understood what ladies wanted at the time: clothing that looked fashionably expensive, but wasn’t. Household apparel spending had risen substantially by the late 1960s and early 1970s. The demand for ready-to-wear clothing grew as more women entered the job market and ceased sewing their own outfits.
- Fashion designer Carla Zampatti was one of the first Australian designers to include swimwear in her collection in 1973. A line of Polaroid sunglasses followed shortly after. She also developed an automobile just for women in collaboration with Ford Australia.
- Zampatti’s clothing included creative designs that made them wearable and practical by the 1980s, and she had established herself as a go-to fashion and lifestyle brand for women. Metal zips would replace finicky openings. Jumpsuits that could be worn from day to night became her hallmark.
- She was ecstatic that her creations were worn by women of various shapes, sizes and ages. She believed that fashion should be inclusive and multi-faceted.
- Among her range of wearable clothing for working women, Carla ensured that her designs were subtle. Metal zippers replaced bothersome openings in the 1980s. She used invisible zippers on pants to preserve a decent line.
- She went on to develop utilitarian jumpsuits that could be teamed up with jackets. She also created glitzy evening attire for weddings, red carpet appearances, and other important occasions.
- Zampatti believed that fashion was first and foremost, meant to be artistic. She felt that the company would fail if aesthetics were ignored. Her products were still made in Australia because she valued local production. She was smart, worldly and outgoing.
- Fashion designer Carla Zampatti was a traveler, but she believed that there was plenty in Australia to keep her busy. She was passionate about Australian-inspired themes and said that Australians didn’t need to be expats, because they had plenty of inspiration at home.
- Carla Zampatti was, is, and will always be a true inspiration for all the women and fashion experts in the world. Her journey has been truly inspiring.
Carla Zampatti – legendary until the very end
Zampatti was a successful entrepreneur, a trailblazing board member (first female chair at SBS, council member of Westfield Group, Art Gallery of New South Wales, University of Technology Sydney). She was a philanthropist for the arts (Sydney Dance Company and other cultural and performance groups).
She was predominantly a feminist fashion designer who advocated for women’s economic freedoms and autonomy. She has accomplished remarkable things since the 1960s. Without Zampatti and her revolutionary fashion concepts, Australia’s fashion industry would have a big void.