International Design Competition Accessories Winner 2022 : Gianluca Ambrosini
29th September 2022
This year’s International Student Design Competition has seen an incredible array of talent, and after much deliberation from the judges, the results are in! The 2022 Accessory Category Winner is Gianluca Ambrosini, with his beautiful entry The Pouch Shopping Bag. Gianluca will be joining the other 3 Category Winners at the live International Final event on September 15th, presenting his design in front of the judges for the chance to become the Overall Winner.
Gianluca is a Peruvian Accessory designer with a B.F.A Industrial Design at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), and is currently based in Georgia, getting an M.F.A in Accessory design, specialising in handbags. His approach to design is rooted in storytelling, creating interesting and tongue-in-cheek designs that start a conversation.
INTERVIEW WITH GIANLUCA AMBROSINI
Tell us about the inspiration behind your project:
Taking single-use products such as plastic bags, boxes, and envelopes as inspiration, I aimed to create a bag that would be long-lasting and maintain an evergreen quality in its design. The Pouch Shopping Bag aims to celebrate the long-lasting qualities of leather as an approach to sustainability. To achieve this, I informed my design by one of the main reasons why users change their bags before the outer leather is damaged, the lining. By creating a replaceable organic hemp twill pouch, the user will be able to replace just that part of the design when needed, maintaining the leather shell. This design is thought to be an everyday use handbag with replaceable interior pouches that allow the user to get several different-looking bags within one bag, combating overconsumption.
What do you think makes leather a great material to design with?
Leather is a long-lasting natural product that is incredibly versatile. The reason I choose leather as my main material is that I am creating a product that feels elevated and will withstand everyday wear and tear. The luxury of real leather is that it looks and feels well-appointed and has longevity which is incredibly important considering the close relationship between the user and the product. There is a vast variety of leather options depending on the needs of the design which creates many opportunities for informed accessory design.
What are your thoughts on leather and sustainability, and how you think leather can adapt to a fashion industry increasingly focused on sustainability?
I believe leather should be at the forefront of the sustainability conversation in design. Leather is often ignored and even overlooked when discussing sustainability, however, due to its organic origins and long-lasting qualities it is perfect to create products that last for several generations of use, instead of discardable products made with alternative materials. I believe that smart, high-quality leather products offer a great solution for overconsumption and overproduction when talking about sustainability in the world of handbags and fashion.
How has this competition influenced your view of working with leather in the future?
I have always been a massive proponent of leather, and it is my default material to work in due to all its characteristics. I think it has been incredibly interesting to design a handbag to enhance the qualities or leather and reinforce the role it should play when talking about sustainability. Its always enriching to tackle design from a different perspective.