ASC x Madalyn Geraldine: Interview with Madalyn, Catherine Catherine Malandrino Designer
ASC: Welcome to A Second Chance Resale! We are delighted to have you here in our Uptown Boutique.
MG: Thank you so much. I’m happy to be here!
Above: Madalyn Geraldine, Designer of Catherine Catherine Malandrino, in our Lexington Avenue boutique, with her favorite ASC pieces.
ASC: I’ve always admired your personal style ever since way back when. I was so excited to learn that you went to FIT, graduated from there and since then have designed for Alice + Olivia, and now Catherine Catherine Malandrino. Amazing! We carry both Alice + Olivia and Catherine Malandrino in store. You also continue your own line, Madalyn Viso…
MG: Yes, Madalyn Viso is what I was going by but I might just let it be Madalyn.
ASC: It’s a good name, can’t argue with that!
MG: Haha yes.
ASC: So on our blog we wanted to introduce our readers and our customers to you as one of our Guest Editors. How did you get started in fashion?
MG: I guess I was interested in it from a young age. My mom was making wedding dresses when I was a kid and I just was always into the material and making things. And then as I got to be more of an adolescent I realized it was clothing but I was always into art and creating and making Christmas presents for everyone and doing collages and finally I learned to sew on this old industrial machine and I thought that was the greatest thing ever.
ASC: Awesome. What is your favorite part about your job now? Either your own designs or your work for Catherine Malandrino.
MG: My favorite part is being able to have such a huge say in what goes on. I really create the concept of the look each season. I do all of the initial sketching and all the research so it’s been very rewarding because it’s like having your own line except you have someone so good to look up to, to emulate, and that’s Catherine so it makes it even easier for me. It’s always good to have a source so you can be like “What is she known for?” and then play off of that… I have a great team but it’s up to me to make the decisions now so it’s nice. [Laughs]
ASC: How would you describe your personal style? This is always an interesting question…
MG: My assistant the other day was like “I can’t decide if you’re a rockstar or a hippie chic”. And I was like “I know I can’t decide either”.[Laughs] What’s most important to me personally is feeling comfortable in clothes that are expressing a little bit about who I am so I always have something, some sort of like a garment or accessory, that’s like a little bit tweaked, a little more like unusual I would say. But for the most part its comfortable stuff with a little twist on wearing certain rings on certain fingers … as you’re getting older and you’re in the industry more and more it becomes just more about what’s comfortable and I always am feeling like wearing a lot of knits and stuff like that to work so my style is always evolving.
ASC: Wonderful. Do you have an all-time best clothing or accessory buy? One item that, every time you wear it, every time you look at it, you think “Thank God I bought that!”
MG: Where you think “this is the best thing ever”? Well, yes, and you know what? I wear them every day – it’s my Harley Davidson handbag and my Catherine Malandrino coat. Those are the two things I do not feel bad about getting. Either of these, ever, and it always helps to get the compliments. I’m like, “OK, this is good”.
ASC: Awesome. Kind of a fun question, do you have a favorite movie character in terms of style?
MG: [Gasps] Oh my gosh, does everyone say Annie Hall?! I always think of Annie Hall and it’s not even personal, although I do like a lot of menswear and tailored jackets and things like that but I’ve since been like not into it wearing my knitwear –winter!—but I just think she emulates something from that period to wear what she was wearing it was kind of forward. It was her confidence really, in the movie, to wear that stuff and still be really sexy and cute.
ASC: Nice, I like that one. And what about a celebrity style icon?
MG: Oh that’s much harder for me. Diane Kruger I love her because she dresses amazing and it’s not a stylist. It’s kind of hard for me to think of a celebrity who doesn’t, not that there’s anything wrong with styling, but is this their true essence or not? And with her she doesn’t use one and she looks amazing all the time and appropriate. She’s gorgeous. I would go with her because she has really good taste.
ASC: Oh yeah, even in her paparazzi daily errand pictures she looks gorgeous. Red carpet, gorgeous. And it doesn’t hurt to have her hot bf next to her.
MG: Oh yeah, nice arm candy doesn’t hurt at all.
ASC: What was most exciting for you with this current fashion week?
MG: The most exciting is that we are launching the line so most exciting was having Bloomingdale’s come in because we are trying to get it into Bloomingdale’s and I have no doubt that it will happen but it didn’t happen this time. All of the other department stores had a really good response to the line; each one has a different idea of what the line should be. But that was my most exciting career-wise thing. And I went to Catherine’s show which was really inspiring.
ASC: Amazing. I saw some of your Instagrams. It looked great.
MG: I was really into it. I always love her stuff but I was especially happy with this show.
ASC: Do you consult with the main brand a lot too for the diffusion line?
MG: Yes, I haven’t been there. I have to go look at some stuff that they have for pre-fall. I need to see that, and Catherine [Malandrino] will come in. She comes more to our office than we go there.
ASC: That doesn’t sound like a bad arrangement at all! [Laughs] Do you have someone in mind as your dream collaboration? A designer, an artist… anyone where you’d like to join forces?
MG: I never thought of designing with a partner but there are some companies where if anyone ever retires or gets up and leaves I would want to design for them…. Alexander Wang is going to Balenciaga, he’s going to still do his line but that would be something I’d love to do. I love Proenza [Schouler]. Proenza would really be my first one. I would want to keep it in New York. I love those guys and they’re great. I love rag and bone but maybe they’re a bit too practical for my own taste. I’d say Proenza.
ASC: We have a beautiful black PS11 that I’m lusting after and a handful of PS1’s. I LOVE the hardware on all of their bags.
MG: Ooooh! They have great handbags
ASC: Ok last question, if not fashion designer then what?
MG: I always say, whenever I get stressed out at work, that I’m moving to the country and I’m going to be an artist. Just art. Fine arts of some sort. Which I actually want to get more into anyway at the same time. It would be: Fashion, Artist, Writer, Poet. I’d have to stay in the creative realm.
NEXT: Shop Madalyn’s top picks from ASC!