Dumitru Preda or Mitichi, as he is known, is one of the people from Sibiu who brought fashion to the city. Through the Feeric Fashion Week Festival, M calendar or the Mitichi brand, he managed to put Sibiu on the international stage in unique ways.
Next, we invite you to discover the man behind the "most creative fashion week" at international level, but also to read details about other projects of Sibiu.
1. Hello, Mythical. You are one of the people who bring added value to Sibiu and we are glad you agreed to be part of our People of Sibiu section. I'm very curious to know more about your projects, so I'll start right away. Most people probably know you through the prism of the fashion festival. Sibiu has accustomed us to many festivals, some of which are more diverse. Please tell us, how did the people of Sibiu receive Feeric Fashion Week from the first to the 12th edition of the festival?
In 2008, when I ran the first edition, I could say that the people of Sibiu were already used to street cultural events. 2017, the year of the Cultural Capital, educated, but also increased the public's expectations regarding the quality of the events. Thus, we are glad that we managed to satisfy these needs from the first edition. Although over time the project has grown, becoming an international and of great importance in the fashion world, it is still a project that belongs to the people of Sibiu and is developed by the people of Sibiu. For this we are even more proud that the great capitals of fashion appreciate our efforts by sending representatives here in each edition.
2. How did the idea of the festival, which became so well known internationally and especially where did this passion for fashion come from?
From 2004 to 2008 we worked in advertising on our own and so I had the opportunity to work for many clients in the fashion world. This led to the development of my own project in which to incorporate the experience gained but where I was able to add value to the independent fashion movement that seemed to be shaping up in Sibiu in the vacuum left by the big garment factories. Following the show model I saw in international magazines and online sources, I built the project more around the show component than fashion. It was challenging to explore a new field at that time, that of fashion. We consider that it is vast, but insufficiently exploited or incorrectly exploited at that time in Romania. After 13 years, the opportunities offered to designers and the interest generated at the top international level are the fruits offered by Feeric.
3. Which of the festival locations is your favorite and why?
Of course, Piata Mica, the place where the fashion week in Sibiu appeared and ends every year. This place plays an important role in my soul, but every year new ideas and new places come to our attention and we expose them in a special way through private shows. A constant, however, is the Cibin Mill and all the production and storage lines from Boromir. There are playgrounds where, thanks to the management, I have the freedom and support to create almost everything I have in mind. I feel the same in the CFR Sibiu Depot.
4. Is Sibiu a fashionable city? Are the people of Sibiu devouring fashion and beauty?
The people of Sibiu have a special interest in fashion. And more and more intense for Romanian fashion. In 2008 in Romania only Bucharest and Iasi benefited from fashion events. Sibiu, a much smaller city, managed with the support of the public and the authorities to become the main center of interest in Romanian and international fashion. Now in Sibiu there are at least 6, 7 stores only with Romanian designers, there are constantly several other niche fashion events and these are just some of the results that Sibiu's interest in fashion has produced. Of course, it still needs to be improved from an economic and logistical point of view, but the interest in fashion of the people of Sibiu is the basis on which it can be built further.
5. Apart from the festival, what other projects does Mitichi have?
Let's say that Feeric is the core of all projects that are developed in the field of fashion. FeericTeam develops media projects, e-commerce, strategy, consulting and international collaborations, but the most dear project and next step in his career is the migration to cinema. Although it was put on standby in 2020, this year I hope we can continue filming and production for the documentary The Fightback produced together with Numa Film.
We filmed at the end of 2019 in 9 countries in Europe and we gathered content for a film dedicated to new sustainable directions in international fashion, starting from discussions with designers, factory owners and showrooms, representatives of fashion weeks, design universities and organizations . I hope to continue filming this year and if everything works next year we will release it. The trailer is already available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44AEsrTSqIw.
6. What is M Calendar and what has it brought to the profile market?
My calendar is unfortunately a project suspended due to the pandemic, but it is with Feeric one of my first projects that I hope to resume soon and maybe I will give it a wider aura. It is the project in which at the end of each year I expressed myself as a fashion photographer, choosing a theme, documenting it and then taking photos, I fulfilled my beginnings of expression. It was an extremely beautiful journey based on challenge and exploration.
7. I discovered with great joy that you are the man behind the instagram account visit.sibiu, followed by over 6,000 people. The activity there is very good, the pictures are beautiful, and so is the promotion of our city. Why such an approach?
I love Sibiu. And because the projects take me all over the world, in 2019 I ended up spending only 4 months / year together in the city. But this city is the main source of inspiration and energy, it is HOME. As a result, every day I spend time in the city, I try to see him differently, more carefully, more involved in things that seem trivial, and to always look at him from different angles. Thus, I expose everything on social media in @ visit.sibiu and through this I try to make up for the city and contribute very little to its promotion.
8. Why is Mitichi grateful to Sibiu and why should Mitichi be grateful to Sibiu?
Sibiu was the place where I created everything I develop now. I owe almost everything to this city, or if not everything at least the beginning. Without the context that the city offers, without its energy and structure, without quality people and natural goodness, I would not have been able to do anything I did. Conversely, I don't know if the problem can be posed like that, but I would like one day the activities to be evaluated as beneficial for the city.
9. 2020 has been a challenging year for most of us. Has the pandemic also impacted your projects and activities?
Of course. As I mentioned, film and photography were two affected sides, but implicitly all projects based on these activities. But it was also a year of re-evaluating, reprioritizing and channeling resources towards efficiency. As a result, we started this year with hope, but more than that, with maximum resources to implement the projects when the social measures will allow their development. Of course we have continued in digital, but anyway most of our organization and activities take place digitally internationally, regardless of the social context.
10. It seems like your day has 48 hours instead of 24. Is there time for something else?
Unfortunately, the day is 24 hours for me too, but a wonderful team and a few hours of sleep increase efficiency. Time is entirely dedicated to development, creation and innovation where there is still room. But when personal life coincides with professional life, there is no need for time for anything else. Time is always used for what matters, for what makes sense.
11. Thank you very much for this interview. In the end, please send a good thought to the people of Sibiu everywhere.
First of all, I take this opportunity to thank them once again for the way they receive our projects. But after a difficult year and a situation that still influences us, I wish Sibiu people a lot of energy and inspiration to overcome the difficult moments and I hope we are all more attached to common goals. Let's value this city more and continue to capitalize on the resources it offers for a common purpose, with international impact.
A material by Magdalena Gliga