‘MAKING THE CUT’ WINNER YANNIK ZAMBONI

Swiss designer Yannik Zamboni introduced the world to his brand maison blanche on the current season of Amazon’s MAKING THE CUT and immediately viewers knew that his approach to fashion would stand out amongst the other contestants.

Zamboni works primarily in white, and his gender inclusive designs are based around conceptual social and political themes. Despite his decidedly avant-garde tendencies, Zamboni‘s appearance on the show showed a softer side of the designer: His sense of humor, sensitivity, and warmth towards the other contestants even surprised judge Heidi Klum, Nicole Richie and Jeremy Scott who commented on an early episode on the contrast between his intimidating designs /personal appearance and his endearing vulnerability.

In an interview with Iris Covet Book just days prior to his debut during NYFW, Zamboni explains his unique take on fashion and how he serves as a guinea pig to his own collections.

ICB: Your entrance on season 3 of Amazon’s Making the Cut is the first time many people became aware of you. What were you hoping you convey to the audience about you and your outlook on fashion?

YZ: I hope people see and feel my positive energy, the will to address socio-political themes, to create social change and the love for sustainable and fair fashion.

ICB: On the show, more so than any other contestant, your personal style mirrored the designs you created. Would you say you are your own muse?

YZ: I see myself more as a guinea pig than a muse.  I believe that improvements to my fashion can only be made if I wear them myself and thus feel the clothes. In addition, I create things that I would like to have on the market, which I miss or simply do not exist yet.

ICB: Prior to establishing your label maison blanche, you worked as a model and a Swiss-certified marketing specialist. How have your previous occupations influenced your designs?

YZ: My commercial training, my studies and work in marketing and modeling have made me what I am today. Each of these steps was necessary to create and run my fashion label maison blanche.

ICB: How has being Swiss contributed to your work (e.g., culture, language, geography, etc.)?

YZ: Swiss people learn at an early age that everything must be perfect, regulated, and orderly. This certainly spurred me on to test boundaries and do things differently, as I always had the feeling of being different and not fitting into the system.

ICB: What other designers past/ present do you look up to?

YZ: Martin Margiela, Rey Kawakubo & Rick Owens

ICB: Why have you committed to only designing in white? What about this color holds special significance to you?

YZ: I find white to be an extremely calming color but more importantly I wanted to set myself the task to design, cut and surface design / change to create a silhouette so exciting that the color no longer plays a role. I noticed that a lot of designs with bold color or prints worked because of the good composition and not because of the design itself. By not using color, I am able to focus on pure design.

ICB: Your work also seems to blur the lines between traditional women’s and menswear. Gender fluidity undoubtedly is the future but how does a brand address the very real physical limitations to doing a unisex collection (e.g., biological men and women have differing body characteristics)?

YZ: Basically, I don’t want to think in binary terms. 2% of our society are intersex people. Moreover, there are very different ways to live and feel gender. Gender has never been binary. I rather approach designs that I create them on a body. A body with a bulge, or a body with breasts, or finding a way to make designs work on different bodies.  I don’t see it as a limitation but as a liberation.

ICB: Do you view the future of your brand as being mass market or boutique?

YZ: I see maison blanche comprising of three lines to satisfy both mass and niche customers. An accessible line that is suitable for every day, a fashion line which is suitable for everyday but   more fashion driven and a high-end line for special occasions or stage wear.

ICB: What is the best part of being on Making the Cut?

YZ: Through Making the Cut, consumers understand why something is made and what its purpose is directly from the designer by watching the entire creation process. I increasingly feel the need to be understood and reach the masses.

ICB: As of this writing, you are in the semifinals of the show. If you win, what would you do with the prize money?

YZ: I would put everything back into the company. Grow slowly and invest in the right people to build a small maison blanche family.

MORGAN SLAVEN BY CHRIS FUCILE

Shirt: Atelier Cillian

 

Photography: Chris Fucile @chrisfucilephotography

Model: Morgan Slaven with DNA Model Management @morgan.slaven

Stylist: Fred Kim @_fredkim

 

Shirt & Pant: Atelier Cillian

 

 

Shirt: Bobblehaus, Pants: Mr. Saturday, Boots: Lucchese, Jacket: Faith Connexion

 

 

Coat: Teddy VonRanson, Shoes: Florsheim, Underwear: Model’s own

 

Sweater: Calvin Luo, Jeans: Faith Connexion, Sneakers: Saint Laurent

 

Shirt & Tie: Connor McKnight, Jeans: Levi’s, Boots: Dr Marten

 

Blazer: Bonobos, Tank: Calvin Klein, Shorts: Wrangler, Boots: Brother & Sons, Necklace: Sentient

 

Pants: Teddy VonRanson

 

Sweater: Aknvas, Pants: TOMBOGO, Sneakers: Converse

 

Boots: Brother & Sons

BECCA SABOL BY GALVIN MASON

 Dress by MALVAR STEWART

 

Photography – Galvin Mason

Model – Becca Sabol @ NEXT NY

Stylist – Priscilla Dwomoh

Hair – Alaina Kathleen

Makeup – Lydia Brock

 

 Dress by MALVAR STEWART

 

 Dress by MALVAR STEWART

 

 Dress by MALVAR STEWART

 

 Dress by MALVAR STEWART

 

 Dress by RYBOLT

 

 

 Dress by MALVAR STEWART

 

 Dress by RYBOLT

TANYA KIZKO BY ANASTASIA GARCIA

Necklace- Sultry Affair @sultryAffairstyle

 

Makeup: Maki H. @ Bryan Bantry Agency using Gucci Beauty
Hair: Anthony Hernandez using Oribe
Styling: Yoko J
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Dress – Melesia Robinson @melesiarobinson , Earrings- Feast Jewelry @feast_jewelry 

 

Dress- Haleia @haleia , Necklace – Feast Jewelry @feast_jewelry

 

Suit – Llobycats by Stacy Boll @LLOBYCATS , Necklace – Coolook @joyeriacoolook

 

Dress – HALEIA @haleia , Earrings Feast Jewelry @feast_jewelry , Bracelet SOLOMEINA @solomeinaJewelry

 

 

Special Thanks to – The Confessional Showroom Nyc @the_confessional_showroom_nyc and Flying Solo @flyingsolonyc

DIGITAL COVER: TANNER REESE

Top, Short and Pant by Prada

Photographer: Gabe Araujo
Model: Tanner Reese @ The Society
Grooming: Nicole Elle @ The Wall Group
Set Design: Emma Magidson
Light Tech: Eric Tanaka
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Sweater, Shirt and Short by Prada
Jacket and Shirt by Calvin Luo
Shirt and Pant by Dion Lee
Pant by Dion Lee
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Jacket, Sunglasses and Pant by Alexander McQueen
Full Look by Alexander McQueen
T-shirt and Pant by Dsquared2
Jacket, Sweater, Pant, Socks and Shoes all by Dior
Jacket by Calvin Luo

AUSTIN MAHONE BY MARCUS DERRICOTTÉ

Turtleneck. Dries Van Noten
Sweater. Kiko Kostadinov

 

 

Photographer: Marcus Derricotte @mderricotte
Stylist: Douglas VanLaningham @dvlstylist
Styling Asst: Jose Santiago 
Hair: Stefani Annaliese @stefaniannaliese
Makeup: Paloma Alcantar @palomamua

 

 

Cardigan. Marni
Tank top. Dries Van Noten
Trousers. OAMC

 

Tank top. Dries Van Noten
Trousers. OAMC
Belt. Maison Margiela

 

 

Tank top(in hand). Dries Van Noten
Trousers. OAMC
Belt. Maison Margiela

 

 

Sweater. Maison Margiela
Jeans. Maison Margiela
Necklace. Vitaly

 

 

Sweater vest. Dries Van Noten
Trousers. Raf Simons

 

 

Blazer. Raf Simons
Shirt. Maison Margiela
Trouser. Maison Margiela

 

 

Shirt. Bottega Veneta
Trouser. Botter
Belt. Maison Margiela

 

 

Tshirt. Saint Laurent
Underwear. Calvin Klein
Jeans. Martine Rose

 

BEAUTY SCREEN TEST: SAMANTHA SABA

Cuff by Celine

 

Model: Samantha Saba at IMG

Photo: Geoffrey Voight Leung

Styling: Rachel Kozub, courtesy of Albright Fashion Library

Makeup Artist: Anna Kurihara using MAC Cosmetics

Hair Stylist: Chika Nishiyama at 87 Artists using Bumble and Bumble

 

Earring by Annelise Michelson

Earring by Janis Savitt
Choker by Balenciaga
Earrings by Janis Savitt
Earrings – Vintage
Rings by Paula Mendoza
Necklace by Janis Savitt
Necklace by Dannijo
Necklace worn as headpiece – Vintage

PATRYK LAWRY BY CHRIS FUCILE

Shirt/Pant: Dries Van Noten, Necklace: Vivienne Westwood, Shoes: New Balance

 

Photography by Chris Fucile

Styling by Dylan Wayne

Model – Patryk Lawry at Heroes

Full Look: Dries Van Noten

 

Jacket: Vintage, Pants: Levi’s, Tank: Stylist’s own

 

 

Blazer: Dries Van Noten, Scarf and Boots: Saint Laurent

MARYSE BY JENNIFER MASSAUX

 

Photographer: Jennifer Massaux @jennifermassaux

Model: Maryse @FreedomModelsLA @maryse.allegra

Stylist: Kelly Brown @kellybrownstyle

Makeup: Samuel Paul @samuelpaulartist

 

Top and skirt – Collina

 

 

Dress – ELLIATT
Turtleneck – Acne Studios
Boots – Marc Fisher
Gold Rings – UNOde50

 

Dress by Antonio Marras

 

Jacket – Blaze Milano, Earrings – Celine

 

Dress – Antonio Marras

 

Pasties – Agent Provocateur, Gloves – Stylists’ own, Pants – Fovari

 

Shoes – Kat Maconie

 

 

BLOODLETTING BY ALICIA STEPP

 

Model – Fish Fiorucci @fishfiorucci @josephcharlesviolaPhotographer – Alicia Stepp @aliciastepptxFashion Stylist – Leslie Rivas @leslierivas_xStyling Assistant – Pamela Cooper @pamela_cooperMakeup & Hair – Bianca Linette Rivas @biancalinettehmuPhoto Assistant – Myckenzee Kunn @myckenzee._.annRetoucher – Sam Retouch @sam.retouch

 

(L): Dress by Fabric Base Inc. Gloves, Stylists Own (R): Jewelry by VITALY , Gloves by Erotic Cabaret Boutique

 

Custom headpiece by Philip Hannel Millinery, Cut out corset and gloves available at Erotic Cabaret Boutique

 

(L): Coat, Vintage available at EverGirl by Dawn Bell, Belt used as neck piece, stylists own, Mesh dress available at Erotic Cabaret Boutique, Boots by Pleaser (R): Top and Pants by Pamela Cooper Studio, Jewelry by VITALY

 

Gown designed by Mysterious by N.P.N, Gloves available at Erotic Cabaret Boutique, Earring – Stylists Own

 

Dress by Fabric Base Inc., Gloves – Stylists own

 

Top and Pants by Pamela Cooper Studio, Jewelry by VITALY

 

Cap – stylists’ own, Corset by Daisy Corsets Erotic Cabaret Boutique,

Shorts by Fendi @ The Webster, Jewelry by VITALY, Boots by Pleaser

 

Hoodie by Balenciaga available at The Webster, Face Mask by Philip Hannel Millinery Harness available at Erotic Cabaret Boutique, Boots by Pleaser