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Russian, settled in Milan 7 years ago and with an exquisite taste for underground fashion, Valeria Semushina (@valeriasemu) caught my attention from the first moment. Her taste in combining her post-soviet origins with Milanese chic has made her one of my favorite stylists.
Graduated in the prestigious Istituto Marangoni of Milan, Valeria often collaborates with numerous specialized fashion media and designers such as: Interview, Hunter, Vanity Fair, Vogue, Alyx or NSS.
If you didn’t know her, you have no excuse… Below we talked with her about her work, Milan and more…
Highxtar (H) – Hello Valeria, tell us briefly who Valeria Semushina is…
Valeria – I’m a fashion stylist from Siberia and I live and work in Milan.
H – You moved to Milan 7 years ago … Why Milan and not London or Paris?
Valeria – I was sixteen and didn’t work in fashion and I didn’t think about esthetic. I moved in Milan just because I already knew pretty well this city more then Paris or London; in Russia I had this stereotype that study fashion in Milan is the best thing that you can do. I finished Istituto Marangoni in Milan and it was really nice, amazing experience I really liked it.
“Definitely you don’t need to have a lot of money to create a good styling, fantasy is the most important part.”
H – Milan is a city that stands out for its “chic” fashion, however it is also true that there is an “Underground Milano” that develops in parallel. You are at the center of this movement … How is this Milan of the underground fashion?
Valeria – I love our underground group in Milan. We are not in a lot like in Paris or London of course, so that’s why probably we are more unique. We don’t have this style just because it’s a trend, no, it comes from the soul and our life style. Real lovers of fashion and street style culture. Here in Milan we are not just underground street style guys we bring Milan’s chic in our street style.
H – When you go shopping… Do you look at the brands names? What do you think is more important, money or personality for a good styling?
Valeria – No, first of all I see a clothes and then brand. Definitely you don’t need to have a lot of money to create a good styling, fantasy is the most important part.
H – Of all the collaborations you’ve made… Which of all you feel more proud? What is your dreamed collaboration?
Valeria – I’m happy about all my collaborations. I met amazing kind people. Made dream works. I have few dreams more to come true of course, I work for it.
H – As a native of Russia … What do you think about the rise of the post-Soviet movement? Do not you think it is over-exploited? And of the maximum exponents of the movement: Vetements, MISBHV or Gosha… Which one is your favourite and why?
Valeria – Yes think this movement is over exploited, so that’s why unfortunately people will get tired of it very fast. But it’s something completely different. Different culture, different way to think to mix clothes of course it’s always curious for a people. It’s was or it is the right time for a Russian fashion or let’s say soviet style because now people love eighties and dark nineties and in Russia we had a strong style, depended on a specific historical moments in Russia. And specially we still have a strong dark street style, Russian hooligan style, which still is very interesting for a people and unique.
I really like MISBHV, they are very modern with a good quality and very cool ideas. I love there fabrics and the way how they present a brand. Gosha and VETEMENTS you can see on everybody, even on a persons who doesn’t care about fashion , misbhv it’s another situation. MISBHV is for the people who do the research and who really love this style , not just because it’s a trend.
H – Where do you look for the inspiration of your styles?
Valeria – People , cultures , art , everyday I have new inspiration. I see inspirations everywhere.
H – I’ve seen you have a natural talent to talk with the camera… How do you feel better, in front as model or behind as stylist?
Valeria – Stylist is better, but is definitely very funny to be a model and stylist at the same time.
H – To finish … Where would you like to see yourself in the next five years? What brands should we follow closely according to your opinion? and… Which are your favourite stores in Milano?
Valeria – I can say that definitely I want to travel a lot for my job and do something more then just a styling or art direction.