Stella (Jean) Novarino is an Italian fashion designer of partial Haitian origin born in 1979.Also a member of the Italian Chamber of Fashion and the only member of Afro-European background. Living and working in Rome, Jean is considered to be Giorgio Armani’s protégé.
The basis of Jean’s work is multiculturalism applied to fashion, resulting in a cultural fusion of her own métisse identity. Her work often merges classical Italian tailoring with stylistic features of varying cultures.
She created the business model and sustainable development platform: “Laboratorio delle Nazioni”. In 2019 she was highlighted by the New York Times as the most convincing of all the New Gen designers in Milan.
Stella Jean won Vogue Italia’s “Who Is On Next” talent contest in 2011 and her dresses swiftly sold out when they landed at MatchesFashion a few seasons later. Her designs have also attracted the attention of Louboutin and been worn by the likes of Beyoncé, Rihanna and Zendaya over the years.
“Stella’s unusual ethnicity and her desire to make ethically sound clothes, helping the poorest women in the world, makes her bold and colourful clothes as beautiful inside as out,” Suzy Menkes, Vogue International editor and a firm supporter of Jean’s, said after the 2014 show.
She studied political science at Sapienza University of Rome, before dropping out to model for Egon von Fürstenberg, a fashion designer.
She is a mother of two and lives in Rome, where the label is based, although it is also stocked in specialty boutiques worldwide, including Matches Fashion, The Corner, Moda Operandi, Farfetch, United Arrows, and Alara Lagos.