Ai LIVE: Alex Badia Discusses Hopes for Fashion’s Future
In this episode of Ai LIVE, host E. Vincent Martinez sits down with Alex Badia, fashion director at Women’s Wear Daily (WWD.com). Badia has also been featured in magazines such as Rolling Stone, Variety, and Muse. The two discuss how the fashion industry weathered the pandemic and Badia’s own personal stylings.
Badia describes his personal fashion sense as fearless, though it wasn’t always this way. As he tells Martinez, he was afraid for many years of how to express himself with fashion. Eventually, he came to the realization that life is too short to take seriously, and so he developed his own style, modeling his look after his father and grandfather. Part of his style is also to act as a guideline for men in their thirties and forties, a demographic Badia feels is under-represented in the fashion world. He believes that your personal style is an evolution of who you are as a person, and that you shouldn’t limit yourself to one thing only.
At the time of the interview, there was still uncertainty about the Covid-19 pandemic, though hope was on the horizon. Badia tells of how it was devastating to watch the fashion industry suffer, with many long-time brands and other lines declaring bankruptcy. However, some lines and businesses have bounced back, and for Badia, it reaffirms his belief that fashion is important. He acknowledges that, going forward, fashion shows will have some digital aspect, whether that’s through livestreams or other recordings, but they will return to in-person shows.
When asked what advice he’d give to fashion students, Badia wants students to make sure they love fashion. In his experience, it’s a long road with a lot of hard work, so it’s important to be certain they enjoy fashion in all its aspects. He also encourages students to be curious and learn as much as they can. He began with an interest in history and the making of garments, and his aim was to learn through the evolution and history of humanity. Badia also notes that fashion is everywhere: movies, TV shows, and even social media. He encourages students to follow brands and trends on social media and learn what’s being said. But fashion, he says, doesn’t just appear out of nowhere; there’s context for it. Much of fashion has a point of reference, and if you can find that, you can know where fashion is headed.
Badia also encourages students to be fearless: “Try not to be afraid of things. Go for it; it’s here for you to take. Don’t feel that people need to offer you things, just go for it.”
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