Marios was born in Athens and studied acting at Drama School before graduating from Veloudakis Fashion school in his home city. His natural interest in singing and performing led to an interest in designing costumes for theatre. The first piece of clothing that he was proud to have designed was a dress made for the character of Ophelia in a play called ‘Hamlet Reloaded’.
Approximately four years ago, Karavasilis made the decision to train as a fashion designer. He trained with fashion house, ‘Celebrity Skin’, and his creations (especially his signature headwear) have appeared in numerous publications.
Current ambitions, inspirations and achievements
Marios’ own style is, in his own words, “distinctive, original, conversational,” and his latest collection could be described using the same words. He combines minimal and complicated stylings with bold colours (predominantly dark red, black, brown and olive green) and his trademark use of a variety of materials to create a highly-textured look on the catwalk. His inspiration comes from, “nature, the elements, the history of art and from love.”
Marios’ elaborate and intricate bejewelled and feathered headpieces are already helping him to make a name for himself in the industry. He is, now, in the process of setting up his own atelier in Athens, where clients will be able to buy some of his pieces.
His favourite high-end fashion designer is Vivienne Westwood and her influence peeks through in his flamboyant and striking designs. His other fashion heroes include Iris Van Herpen and Marchesa, as well as teacher and head manager, Anabella Veloudaki. Their influence is evident in his catwalk pieces.
Winner of a New Designer award – ‘Best Trendsetter’ – at Athens Xclusive Designers week, Marios’ work has also been embraced further afield when he showcased his MK brand at Serbia Fashion Week. These are among the greatest achievements thus far in his fashion career and there’ll certainly be more accolades to come.
Artist or inventor?
Kreol wanted to know more about what makes Marios ‘tick’. What inspires him when creating a new collection and how he goes about creating it? He responds that he doesn’t set himself a particular timescale or time limit for developing a design from conceptualisation to construction because he sees himself very much as an artist and, of course, art has to happen at its own pace.
That said, the process is the same for each design: “I design the figure, create the pattern, sew it and style or customise it. That could take as little time as a single day, or it could take a week or more, depending on the complexity of the concept and the intricacy of the design itself.”
Choice of material. Modelling and the beauty of sketching.
Choosing the right materials is obviously an important step in creating the final design, particularly since so much of Marios’ work is centred around texture and how different materials hang. He buys all his material in Athens, being an ardent supporter of the Greek economy by buying local products. Of course, it helps that the material he buys is of the finest quality – “This”, he says, “together with originality, is what makes a piece of clothing truly great.”
To prepare for a fashion shoot or show, Marios works hard to create a solid collection with pieces that fit the concept and mood he wants to capture, ensuring that each will stand out and be a fine example of his unique style and abilities. He then recruits models or uses a model agency to find the right people to model that collection. His favourite model is Tyra Banks, with whom he would love to work!
Of the whole process, though, from sketching designs to constructing them to watching them on the catwalk or at a shoot, Marios says his favourite activity is sketching: “I am very interested in sketching clothes because it is a varied process.” His least favourite part? “The control of the sewing process.”
To Marios, fashion is all about, “expression, creation and originality.” So, while he does use the internet and fashion magazines to stay up to date with the latest catwalk trends, he’s developed a solid portfolio of designs that are easily recognisable as his own.
What does the future hold?
Marios’ dream is to be able to make a living from his work, but in the meantime his short-term goals are to finish creating his atelier, design his next collection and find the inspiration he needs for his subsequent concepts.
For aspiring fashion designers, he has the following advice: “You should be visionary and adept, but above all, be yourself.” He considers these to be the attributes he has that are most important to his work, while his greatest strength is his ability to adapt to different situations.