Lockdown Stories is a series of short interviews with creative entrepreneurs and businesses that have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Since its beginnings, the main goal of Future Positive has been to share inspiring projects happening all around the world and, during these strange and difficult times for independent businesses and creators, we want to continue providing support and visibility. If you’d like to be featured in this series, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us your story.
Silvia Stella Osella — Textile & surface designer, trend & color consultant
Location: Milan, Italy
When did the lockdown start for you and how has your business been affected?
Social distancing here started pretty early since this is the area where the pandemic first started in Europe. So we have been home from February 24th, and full lockdown started a couple of weeks later.
I am an independent designer and consultant, so of course my business has been affected; many projects have been cancelled or postponed (with no certainty of the new dates, of course…) I work mainly with companies: textile manufacturers, fashion brands, etc. Now most of my customers are facing very difficult times, and nobody knows how long it will take to really recover from this.
Also, working at home with a toddler and the idea of schools not reopening will definitely have an impact on our work too.
Have you found any new ways of working or have come up with new product ideas during this time?
Luckily I work with many international customers, and the pandemic hasn’t hit any country in the same way; also, I am finally able to focus on some collaborations I never really have the proper time to think about.
What are some of the positive takeaways you have experienced during this time?
Slowing down and spending time with my little family, without any doubt. Usually during the year we work so hard and when it’s time for holidays we run somewhere very far for as long as possible! So we actually never get to spend so much time at home, enjoying our time together in its simplicity, taking care of our garden, cooking, playing. I really, really hope that this experience will teach us all to live at a different pace.
How do you see your business evolving over the next few months?
I still don’t have a clear idea of when things will get back to normal in my studio. I think it’s probably going to be a pretty slow process, but I am trying to see all this as an opportunity: my work is based on deep research on trend forecasting, color evolution and so much more, and I am really eager to study how this huge, unexpected event will impact on the creative fields.