The New York Times, Feb. 24, 2016

Sara Maino at Italian Vogue: ‘Highlighting’ Emerging Designers

“You will rarely see me at the big shows, those blockbuster events with a starry front row...” Sara Maino By Elizabeth Paton

“You will rarely see me at the big shows, those blockbuster events with a starry front row. That is really not my scene,” Sara Maino, senior editor at Italian Vogue and scion of one of the most powerful families in Italian fashion, said on the eve of fashion week. […] Ms. Maino continued. “Many of the designers I am looking for don’t have the money to come to me. So instead, I go to them. I like it that way.”

For ambitious would-be designers with fashion dreams, Ms. Maino, 42, has become a high-profile guiding light. As the head of talent at Italian Vogue, she oversees its search for new faces, its competitions and initiatives, and is one of the most well-known, respected and nomadic talent spotters in the business.
While she dislikes the term “discovered” — “It’s more like I highlight them in a critical moment” — her hand has helped the likes of the clothing designers Jonathan Anderson and Stella Jean; Sophia Webster, who creates footwear; and Sara Battaglia, who designs handbags, on their path to recognition and acclaim.
“What makes Sara such a force is that she is genuinely looking for designers who can revolutionize the market,” Franca Sozzani said from the front row of the Gucci show on Wednesday.
“This business is getting tougher and tougher, so those creating more of the same will just die; they will disappear,” she continued. “Through our Vogue Talents program, Sara has pushed and encouraged new talent to break the mold, but goes a step further by helping them find the mentoring, funding and media spotlight necessary to have staying power, too.”

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