Hi Andrea, great to meet you and thanks so much for agreeing to this short interview! First things first, I understand that you went to the Instituto di Moda Burgo which is a fashion college co-founded by Roberto Cavalli, tell us about that, what was this like and how did it impact you?
Thank you guys, my pleasure! I’m just so thankful for that school, my teachers, everyone there is so professional and talented themselves. They were so patient with me, I was the typical student that never did homework or anything… The director of the school really believed in me, Mrs. Alejandra Siller, She would sit me down in her office almost every week lol and tell me how much she believed in me and that she knew I would go far in life, but was worried about me in school lol I was just horrible with debt lines and remembering things. I’ll always be so grateful for her and the amazing BURGO technique way of illustrating, that helped me put my ideas from my head on to paper and that is priceless! All of Roberto Cavalli’s techniques.
Aside from college, you started in fashion by making wedding dresses for friends. Given that someone’s wedding is such a huge day, what was it like making your first wedding dress, were you nervous?
Completely! And so stressed. It is a woman’s most special day, the day they have been dreaming of since they are little girls and as a designer, you want nothing more than to make that dream a reality, so there’s a lot of pressure behind it.
How many wedding dresses have you made? How does it make you feel when you see the bride to be so happy with your creation?
Wedding dresses for brides a little over 25, but in general, I’ve made also for bridesmaids, maid of honors or simpler wedding attendees, so A LOT!
You moved to Miami to further establish yourself as a fashion designer. Why Miami?
I was determined to make a name for myself, but in NY, I would be another designer trying to make it, would I succeed? Sure, maybe in 10 to 20 years. LA, another creative trying to make it. Would I make it? Sure… along with the other 10 thousand that locally make it but can only cross on to the success side if you are connected and welcome by those closed clicks in the industry. Miami? Miami is known for its sexual side, women twerking in thongs all day every day. (and hey, to each their own, I don’t criticize, if you love what you do, you do it!)
Do you want a model for your video? You want to let the world know how much a PIMP/WINNER you are? And guess whose there standing out from the crowd? The designer wearing a turtleneck that offers her talent as a designer and creative.
I came to the place where I would be the “odd one out” People are tired of the same thing, so you need to go where what you offer is not. Once you establish your name, you can go on to the next place being “somebody”. Miami gave me that.
Tell us about your fashion brand?
T A N K O V I T Z? I understand it is immensely popular amongst Miami’s elite.
How did you get started with building your brand?
By making sure I was different, offering clothes and looks you don’t normally find in Miami, the word spread around quickly, and soon I was dressing everyone in the Latino industry if you were in the Red Carpet, you were most likely wearing T A N K O V I T Z. Class and elegance with a little touch of sensuality. And a lot, a lot of ART, hand made hand printed jackets.
You were a designer of the year recently, tell us about that and what it meant for you to win such an award?
CRAZY, First of all, I didn’t even know I was nominated… when I found out, it was with the invitation to assist to the ceremony, I couldn’t believe it, I was up there with other very known designers, it was surreal.
Then suddenly announced to me as the winner, I had to give a speech and all and I was just so nervous I spilled my wine on me lol Great experience, a tremendous honor.
I hear that you have been styling models for music videos and have also featured in many famous people’s videos such as Nicki Minaj, London on the track, YANDEL and countless more; do you enjoy working on music videos and what is it about them that you like?
Oh yeah, I love it! Love the creativity of putting a video together, how you have to understand the music and the location to create a look, it’s just so much fun, I get paid to play Barbies with human beings.
The fashion industry is very competitive, so what is most important the attribute you need to have to compete?
Patience, but not to compete, but to move forward and up. I’m in my own world, creating, having fun. I don’t like to watch other designers if I did it would only stress me out on the fact that I have so many great ones above me.
As long as I stay in my path creating I will get to where I want to get. You will drive yourself crazy if you view this as a competition, at least that’s my personal opinion.
What advice do you have for young people looking to get started in fashion?
Study business! Study marketing, it’s not all about the fun.
I am writing and a journalist based in Singapore. My passion is journalism and PR coverages for small and medium-sized businesses around the world. Since the start of my career, I have been in Content Marketing and have proven record by featuring businesses, products and technology on various news outlets like Forbes.com, entrepreneur.com, vizaca.com, inc.com, businessinsider.com and thriveglobal.com