Q & A with Carlos Miele
Designer Opens Boutique in Village of Merrick Park
SocialMiami.com’s Allison Weiss Brady interviewed Brazilian fashion designer Carlos Miele who recently showcased his collection during Ocean Drive’s Fall Fashion Week. The Miami fashion scene added yet another bullet to its arsenal as Miele recently opened a boutique at the Village of Merrick Park in Coral Gables. Allison gets Carlos’ inside scoop on his love of Brazil and Miami.
AWB: Why did you decide to open a boutique in Coral Gables at the Village of Merrick Park?
The choice was either Bal Harbour Shops or the Village of Merrick Park. Merrick Park is very young and fresh, and they gave me a very good store location in front of the beautiful garden, so that is why I chose Merrick Park.
AWB: What would you say is the most fashionable thing about Miami women?
Miami women are confident and conscious of the body, which makes them very fashionable. The women in Miami like to be desirable for a long time. The women in Brazil and Miami are both very aware of their bodies, in a sexy and elegant way.
AWB: What designers do you wear?
Armani, Tom Ford, and Alexander McQueen.
AWB: What are the major interior design differences between your Paris store and your Miami store?
In each store, I like to create a dialogue between the city and the architecture. In Paris, the store is about sculptures and Baroque. In Miami, the design is more clear, glossy, and about reflections and water. We were going for a very clean look in our Miami boutique.
AWB: How does your MIELE line differ from your Carlos Miele line?
MIELE is our bridge line, our everyday, casual line. There is a major price difference in the lines. MIELE dresses are approximately $600, and the Carlos Miele dresses are approximately $5,000.
AWB: What are your favorite fabrics, or materials to work with?
Silk, cotton, linen, and wool.
AWB: How do the Miami beaches differ from those in Brazil?
In Miami, the land is flat, and you can see beautiful beaches from almost every direction. In Brazil, the beaches are in the middle of a lot of more landscape, deep forests, and mountains.
AWB: What are your favorite restaurants in Miami and Miami hotels?
Casa Tua, Nobu, and the Setai.
AWB: Can you tell us about your involvement in Rainforest Foundation-US and what other celebrities are involved?
Sting and his wife Trudie Styler started the foundation in 1989. T-shirts benefiting the foundation were designed by Scarlett Johansson, Rachel Zoe, Camilla Belle, and others. We had a wonderful party in my New York City store with Vogue magazine to showcase the t-shirts. Twenty percent of the sale of each t-shirt benefits the Rainforest Foundation-US. The t-shirts are sold in my store and elsewhere.
AWB: What aspects of your Brazilian heritage are showcased in your collections?
My strong Brazilian roots, inspired by nature, which causes me to use many textures and layers. And there are many colors, as Brazil is a happy country; there is no winter here!
AWB: Growing up, did you always want to be a fashion designer?
No, my background is in art.
AWB: Who are some of your favorite artists?
Richard Prince is one of many.
AWB: When traveling on the long flights between Brazil and the US, what do you do to pass the time and relax?
I read a lot of books, especially art books, not novels.
AWB: What do you like about Miami?
I love everything about Miami, and I want to spend more time here, as it is close to my background. One day, I will be doing a collection about Miami.
Allison Weiss Brady handles marketing for celebrities and non-profits. She is active in many organizations in South Florida, New York, and Pennsylvania including Big Brother Big Sister, The Community Coalition, Voices Against Brain Cancer, Gene Spotlight, The Barton G. Kids Hear Now Foundation, and one of her family’s foundations Say Yes to Education, which recently partnered with Quincy Jones. Allison sits on the board of Russell Simmons’ Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, and she and her husband Chip Brady were honored by Russell Simmons at the 2010 Rush Philanthropic gala in East Hampton. She and her husband Chip are members of Art Basel’s Junior Host Committee and Allison is a member of the Vizcaya Preservation Luncheon Founding Committee. Allison was also the sole recipient of the University of Pennsylvania’s 2008 Young Alumni of the Year Award, and serves on the Overseers board for the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania.