Italian Japanese fashion designer, stylist and editor Nicola Formichetti is the multi-talented artistic director of Italian fashion label Diesel. His appointment was announced in April of this year after confirming his decision to leave French fashion house Thierry Mugler where he was Creative Director for two and a half years, establishing himself as one of the most innovative and popular designers working in the industry today. As he prepares to launch the Diesel Tribute capsule collection let's take a look back at some of his career highlights and the 10 most intriguing facts about this colourful and creative fashion character...
1. He worked with Nick Knight on the latest Diesel campaign
Formichetti could have his pick of collaborators, but the man he chose to work with on the Diesel Tribute capsule collection is Showstudio.com's Nick Knight. The photographer shot the campaign for the collection which launches on November 4.
2. His fashion career bagan at Dazed & Confused magazine
While working as a buyer at London boutique 'The Pineal Eye' he was spotted by stylist Katy England who appointed him as junior fashion editor at the magazine. He rose through the ranks to become creative director in 2005 and a decade later was asked to come back as Dazed & Confused's guest editor for an issue. Formichetti explained at the time, “Jefferson [Hack – the magazine’s co-founder and publisher] wanted to celebrate me after ten years, to put me on the cover. I was, like: Whaaat? I just wanted to pump the magazine up, show people what I’m into. And this month, what I’m into is Asia.”
3. He owns the cutest dogs in the fashion industry
Neville Jacobs may be cool, but no fashion pooches are more adorable than Formichetti's pretty Pomeranians Tank and Bambi. So special are these pups that they've got their own Instagram - hours of fun!
4. The ladies love him...
From celebrity styling to his time at Thierry Mugler, the designer amassed an A-list following including Rita Ora, Eva Mendes and Mrs Justin Timberlake - AKA Jessica Biel.
5. And he's got a soft spot for Kim Kardashian
Kim K flaunted her pre-pregnancy bod in the March 2013 issue of US Elle, styled by none other than Nicola Formichetti. It seems a bond has been forged between the two powerhouses with Formichetti telling us, "I think she’s a really beautiful girl, a girl with a figure, you know? She’s the most famous woman in America and I love the fact that she’s from TV and people don’t always think that she’s cool but I have no problem with things like that."
6. Next on his styling wishlist is Miley Cyrus
"I love Miley Cyrus, I think she’s so cool, she’s so like, "I don’t give a f**k". I’d love to work with her", Formichetti told us. Then again who wouldn't want to put more clothes on Miley?
7. He created a cartoon panda version of himself
Formichetti launched the Nicopanda line in a pop-up shop in New York in September 2011 with his brother Andrea. Based on a panda cartoon that looks like him, the range of products from i-Pod cases to tees was an instant cult success.
8. He's responsible for some of Lady Gaga's most shocking looks...
It was back in 2010 that the bonkers songstress first raided the meat counter for an appearance at the VMA Awards. She caused sharp intakes of breath when taking to the stage in an ensemble made entirely of raw meat slabs, topped off with a steak fascinator. The outfit, created by Franc Fernandez and styled by Formichetti who also worked with Gaga and photographer Terry Richardson on a Vogue Hommes Japan shoot featuring a meat bikini.
9. And even designed a bag inspired by her bum!
Actress Jane Birkin had a Hermes handbag named in her honour, Alexa Chung is the inspiration behind Mulberry's ever popular 'Alexa' satchel and Lady Gaga has had a designer clutch created in the shape of her, err, derriere. Well that's one way to pay homage to your muse!
10. He's an internet wiz kid
Not only is Formichetti's Instagram account one of the best in the fashion business, but he also finds his own inspiration - and muses - on social media. Remember his Mugler boy, Rick Genest? The one covered zombie tattoos? Well he discovered this character on Facebook and then flew him straight to Paris - paying thousands of pounds worth of fines to get him a passport in the process. So when he was looking for stars his first Diesel campaign instead of calling on an A-list actress or catwalk veteran he got out his laptop and trawled through Tumblr. He selected a rainbow of hair colours and body shapes, picking 20 rulebreakers whose faces have since been spotted around the globe.
Read our exclusive interview with Diesel's Nicola Formichetti here.