INTERVIEW WITH MARTHA NOWAK ON HER KNITWEAR COLLABORATION It is always a joy to see our alumni continue to do great things after leaving FUA, especially when they come back to show us! Martha Nowak was a FUA student in the summer of 2015 and finds herself back in Florence to embark on an exciting new project with FUA instructor and fashion designer, Eva Di Franco. Martha caught up with us to update us on what’s next for her fashion career.
Welcome back to Florence! How was your experience here at
to the project, as I’ve ended up studying Textile Design, so I’ve been
working a lot on knitting and weaving. Eva herself specialises in
It’s great to be back! I studied at FUA for 4 weeks during the summer
apparel and so she has taught me a lot with regards to patterning
of 2015, right after I graduated from high school and I was preparing
garments and the design process.
to start at the Rhode Island School of Design. I was already thinking about specialising in Textile Design in particular, and I took a Fashion
What has been the most exciting element of your collaboration
Design course with Eva Di Franco, who is both an instructor at
with Eva Di Franco?
FUA as well as an independent fashion designer. I learnt a lot about
I really love that although we specialise in two different kinds of
drawing models and figuring out proportions of the body, as well
fashion, our beliefs in dexterity, commitment and putting time
as gathering together ideas and inspiration for making apparel.
into something you make are very much the same. I have always
For me, that was a really important starting point for my studies.
believed in devoting time and effort into making something by
Now I’ve already completed 3 years at Rhode Island and I’m about
hand and making it well. Knitting itself is a very immersive process
to start my final year.
that’s mostly based on specific technique and mathematics. When everything comes out right it’s very satisfying. I really admire that
What brought you back to Florence this summer?
Eva takes time over her work and commits a lot of effort into sewing
Eva Di Franco and I had a really great relationship as student and
everything out herself before starting a project. It’s been an amazing
teacher from the very beginning. After I left FUA and started at
experience to see her studio and work alongside her. Eva from end
design school, I stayed in touch with Eva on Instagram and we kept
to end is immersed in the design and production processes, so that
track of each other’s work. I’m back here in Florence to work on a
she knows the garment inside-out by the time it’s finished.
collaborative project with Eva. We both bring our different talents 14