Norwegian-born Peter Dundas has been the creative and artistic director at Emilio Pucci since 2008. He began his career as an assistant costume designer for the Comédie Française in Paris, and has held design roles at Jean Paul Gaultier, Christian Lacroix, Roberto Cavalli, Ungaro and Revillon. He lives mainly in Florence.
Bari-born, Milan-based Anna Dello Russo is the editor-at-large and creative consultant for Vogue Japan, and a style celebrity thanks to a penchant for changing her extravagant outfits several times a day at the fashion shows. She spent 18 years at Condé Nast Italia, starting as fashion editor of Vogue Italia and then serving as editor of L’Uomo Vogue from 2000 to 2006.
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ADR: I collect all of Peter’s iconic pieces. What I like about his style is that it’s at once cool and ultra fierce. Even if a dress is isn’t body conscious, it always makes a woman look sexy, cool – the kind of woman I like. He’s great with prints and colour, which can be tricky for many designers.
PD: It’s my interest to make clothes that make a woman shine, that make her feel empowered; it’s the kind of sexy that everyone likes. I remember when we met – it was during my first Italian job [in the Roberto Cavalli creative team] nearly 10 years ago. I was totally shy and so impressed by how focused and precise you were in your creative director role, considering the total chaos that surrounded you.
ADR: When I first saw you, I thought, “who is that handsome guy who looks like an actor?” Although you came from France you didn’t, and still don’t, have an attitude. You’re quite Zen, and shy, in my view the typical Norwegian: candid, naif, pure. But you were so passionate, a volcano of ideas that it was obvious from the beginning that you wouldn’t stay in a team for long.
PD: We live in different cities and have intense work schedules now, but we are still very close: I’ve become your official walker.
ADR: Yes, you are my official walker. You like to party and I like to be accompanied by a handsome gentleman. This kind of friendship is long-lasting, like the ones with best friends from primary school.
PD: I like to think of you as my good fairy because you’re honest, enthusiastic and supportive. Plus, you personalise every outfit you wear and aren’t afraid to dare.
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ADR: I like to consider myself the guardian of fashion. When I moved house 10 years ago, I had 4,000 pairs of shoes. I had to buy a bigger home to store all the clothes because I need closets, not kitchens, and many are now in my house in Bari [in the southern Puglia region]. I’m super tidy so every item is catalogued, stored in garment bags with tissue paper, perfumed and on hangers that are all the same. But I’m not a vintage fan – I don’t like the smell of old clothes. I’m also not a fan of bags, because anything that is practical isn’t handsome; if anything I like clutches. Pyjamas and tracksuits are sloppy so I only wear Abercrombie & Fitch tracksuits to go to my yoga class. If you dress comfortably, you don’t get the look.
PD: My father was a widower and he had no idea of how to dress me and my sister because he was fine just wearing an anorak. He would haphazardly customise old clothes, so I started making clothes for my little sister and he brought me a sewing machine. When I finished my studies, I decided that I wanted to do something useful that I also enjoyed.
ADR: Even as a teenager I loathed jeans and hoodies so I would ransack my mother’s closet, and the closets of my mother’s friends. On Sunday morning, they would open their closets to find they were missing a blouse or had a mismatched suit, and they would groan, “Oh, that’s Anna”. When I could, I would force my mum to buy designer clothes from Callaghan, Complice, Missoni and Versace so I could wear them on my Saturday night outings. They were too tight for her and too big for me, so I nipped them with belts or pinned them.
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