Today we are introducing Deborah De Fiore, graphic designer and art director extraordinaire, who has been collaborating with ecru from the inception of the brand in 2013. We are constantly working with her from communication plans to art direction, to creating beautiful stationery for ecru. Let's get to know Deborah a little better.
You are all over ecru, can you tell us more about this!
I remember when I met Nur at Gem Palace, Jaipur, it was 14 years ago. At the time I was working for the jewelry designer Marie Helene de Taillac, and Nur started to work for Munnu Kasliwal. We were three girls from Paris, Stockholm, Beirut working in Jaipur. We quickly became friends and moved together to the beautiful Barwara House. Sophia, Nur and I, had a lot of fun and we quickly became a small family. As we were so supportive of each other, it allowed us to start our own projects and companies. I started Modest Genius Design graphic and art direction, Nur started ecru, and Sophia launched Sophia 203 the beautiful embroidery atelier.
I was doing branding, logos, packaging for them. Then I started developing products, stationery, and prints. The collaboration has lasted over eight years today. Even if we are in different parts of the world now, I’m in Paris, Nur between Jaipur and Kuwait, and Sophia in Tokyo we are still very connected. I’m in the process of working on ecru’s communication and looking forward to designing some new pop-ups!
You are a graphic designer, a scenographer an illustrator, and then some, can you tell us about what you do and how you do it? Can you share with us some of your beautiful illustrations?
I love to work on different projects because I learn from them a lot. The way I approach it is not so different. It is very important for me to understand the context. For me design should have a purpose, otherwise, there is no use of producing anything. In that sense, I appreciate designs that have been worked on until the essential part is left.
However, when I am drawing, I’m not thinking much. I have learned slowly to trust my feelings, my subconscious. For a long time, I wanted to draw but when I was in front of the paper I couldn’t. I didn’t know what to draw. What is important, what needs to be drawn? For a few years, I could not answer these questions, so I didn’t want to draw. Until the day I decided to stop asking myself why and what, and just started drawing things that I liked, and what was in front of me. Mostly friends, family, or unknown people, but also nature, trees, and objects. Sometimes I draw something from my mind, but rarely. I like to draw real things from this world.
Today, drawing is part of my routine, and I am so glad because It makes me happy. I feel it is taking me somewhere. One day all these drawings will make sense, I’m confident of that! Meanwhile, I’ll keep doing my thing and trust myself.
We hear your father can also make magic with his hands, tell us more!
My father is the best Tailor in Paris! I am his modest proud daughter. He learned from his Italian dad, at the age of 14. Today he is 79 and you can find him working in his studio Rue de Tournon with the same big scissors and chalk as his dad did listening to the same radio station, he has been listening to the past 40 years.
His work is impeccable, beautiful fabrics, all done by hand. If you meet him, he will tell you lots of stories, because his clients are mostly interesting personalities like politicians, artists, and businessmen. I remember him telling me the story of one of his clients who sent his private plane to Greece to get feta because he probably wanted to have tomatoes feta salad for lunch! Or the stingy short man who would always try to get a discount despite that he was a millionaire! But he also has an adorable client who adored him and came with gifts and love letters! Without forgetting the one and only women he has cut a jacket for the beautiful Fabienne Verdier. My dad and I share the love of beautiful things done well, and chocolate too!
I asked my father do you have any advice for someone starting in the design or artistic field? He responded, "you should go toward beauty. Any work you love will be well done. You must be in love with and passionate about your artistic job because it might not be lucrative or recognized".
Stay tuned for tomorrow's wonderful woman...