Roberto Cavalli Slams Anna Wintour, ‘Terrible’ American Fashion

Roberto Cavalli
Photo: Getty Images
Roberto Cavalli.

Apparently Roberto Cavalli has a few choice words for the state of American fashion. And, no, none of them are positive.

"Just look at American fashion, which is almost fashion," the designer tells D, the style magazine for Italian newspaper La Repubblica in a new video interview. "It's terrible and you almost can't look at it, but it has been driven by a great journalist—Anna Wintour—who wants all women to be like her and to dress the way she does."

Ouch! Though Cavalli's comments on the Vogue editor aren't nearly as scathing as the recent attacks launched by Azzedine Alaïa and Jean Paul Gaultier—the latter of whom dubbed her "monstrous"—they could result in some troubling fallout for the Italian designer.  

It's perhaps convenient then that the king of animal prints isn't preoccupied with racking up editorial features in the pages of Vogue.

"Success is not being on the pages of weekly magazines and in the great fashion magazines," Cavalli says. "Success is word-of-mouth, is spreading the news."

Money also helps. Cavalli is the first to admit that he's had his own share of failures recently, with financial obligations preventing him from designing as wildly as he'd like.

"Perhaps this moment is the most difficult one for fashion, because I definitely adore my Just Cavalli line for youths," he says. "Unfortunately, this line underwent a great trauma with the bankruptcy of DTL and it was a great trauma for the whole maison."

And though he freely admits starting his own label so that he could buy a Fiat 500, Cavalli stresses that the next generation of designers should focus less on commercialism and more on creativity.

"Don't follow designers like us too closely," he advises. "Try to create a new and different direction; this is perhaps the most important thing. I see young people coming out of design schools and they are too minimalist. Probably because their professors are too minimalist, because they have professors who follow styles of design that are too industrial and commercial ... Try to first be artists of fashion, because there are already too many fashion designers."

We suspect a certain Ms. Wintour might agree once she sees this.