There is something so compelling in the work of Sef Farrugia which quickly grabs your attention and encourages you to learn more about her. Her work is intriguing, vibrant and with unique touches here and there, which are often inspired from her local and Mediterranean surroundings. Above all, her scarves, bow ties, eye masks filled with dried lavender seeds, pocket squares, and her exclusive cushion collection are what she defines as the product of a contemporary visual, with quirky characteristics.
When did it all start?
For as long as I can remember, I have always been interested in the Arts. I can’t quite say when, but I was very, very young. My mother is a seamstress, my uncle is a tailor, my family owned a clothing business, one of my grandfathers worked in a printing press and my other grandfather started a timber factory, which my uncles then continued. All these things have, for sure, influenced my love of materials and creating from early on. My educational path has always been in arts and design also.
What makes the Maltese Mediterranean surroundings such an interesting source of inspiration to your work?
I was born and bred here, and so whether I like it or not, it automatically influences me. The Mediterranean has always been a hotspot for all sorts of things, from merchants from all around the world trading goods, to mixing of civilizations, to political conquests, to
religious battles, and so much more. All of this keeps inspiring me to further explore the surroundings, which I am very much part of. The Maltese Islands have such a full past and so much going on at present, that it is impossible not to be affected by it all in one way or another.
One of your collections, ‘SAFFI’ is based on Malta’s geology. How can geology serve as a muse for a fashion collection?
Personally, I look towards all sorts of subjects for inspiration. My latest collection ‘SAFFI’ was based on geological layers, and it also included patterns from other rock types, such as the ‘Agate’ rock for print variation purposes. Geology is amongst my many interests, however, in this case I thought it was very much appropriate to bring attention and open conversation on what is going on around us, and our neglect towards our island’s scarce sources. One being our main source; limestone. The collection included prints inspired by limestone, sandstone and other blown out details from rock types and layers. Also, rocks in general serve as a great source for creating so many patterns.
Is there enough awareness on local fashion talent?
It has for sure improved. What there aren’t any of, are genuine critics, most of the time misinformation is spread via people who are meant to inform and most opinions are biased, and so one doesn’t quite get a clear picture or improve their work. We have got a long way to go, however the fact that we are talking about the scene and questioning it is already a positive thing.
What projects does Sef Farrugia have in store for the upcoming months?
I am looking to keep growing my brand ‘SEFFARRUGIA’, to keep introducing beautiful items
in my mini shop, and hopefully produce a clothing collection some time soon.
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