The business side was starting to take over the joy of creating.“I didn’t want to have 20 assistants; I wanted to have one assistant, and just show my work how I wanted as an artist,” she said.“If Susan had been born around the same time as us, I wonder if she would have had to make more commercial decisions, or done more production-oriented designs.Her coming up in New York was a very different scene than ours.”That might not be a bad thing.Cianciolo remembered the time without nostalgia: “Well, people dying of drug overdoses or I don’t know, being homeless and still making collections,” she said.“We copy periods of time style-wise, but you can’t copy periods of times of living.”By 2001, Cianciolo “wanted nothing to do with fashion,” she said.“I mean, that’s my whole investment in my life, is the beauty of the craft.
(The decade’s heavy hitters, on the other hand, stuck to the tents at Bryant Park.) Van Huy helped Cianciolo organize and style her first show.
“How else would you get the clothes sewn other than just sitting and sewing them?
”“It was just an enormous amount of handwork,” she added.
“We’re young Americans trying to make stuff in New York,” Latta said modestly.
Still, she acknowledges that means a very different thing today than it did in the '90s.