Decades of Design

Roseanna Ansaldi

This podcast is a retrospect that delves 40 plus years into my notable design career - Hi, I’m Roseanna Ansaldi, designer, patternmaker, leather specialist, business owner and entrepreneur. Join me as I take you through each decade of my design career step-by-step. I will share the ups and downs of business, the celebrities I created for from artists Aerosmith to Snoop Dog, to Maria Carey, and sports figures from Boston Celtic icons to New England Patriot favorites. You will hear about the retail accounts my apparel products were featured in like Saks Fifth Avenue and FAO Schwartz as well as my experience as an NFL, NHL and Major League Baseball Properties licensee. My journey begins at an early age learning the technique of embroidery, progressing to leather craft and soft good skills. You will find out how my design abilities took me from the world of ballet to rock ‘n’ roll to hip hop, from made-to-order designs to overseas production and from apparel to soft good design, or as I like to say, “from jockstraps to Patriot missiles”. Follow me on my journey as I weave through each decade; I hope you will find it as interesting as it has been for me! read less

Episode 5: 2010-Present  INNOVATIVE
Apr 28 2023
Episode 5: 2010-Present INNOVATIVE
Life comes full circle and I move back to the suburbs seeking a quieter life, a refocused design business, and an urge to seek out new ways to grow. A unique prospect presents itself at a local downtown establishment, the Andover Bookstore. Unbeknownst to me, not only is it the oldest continually running independent bookstore in the USA, but it also had an apparel section! Owner John Hugo calls in on this segment to speak on how he offered me the role of managing and growing the stores annex of Phillips Academy clothing and gifts. There I was contracted to expand the existing in-store academy merchandise, improve its web presence, and develop a marketing strategy, a position that offered me a challenge to learn a new aspect of the apparel world, and an opportunity to make new connections - exactly what I needed at the time. Eventually, that experience sparked a third business for me, the Andover Collection LLC, a retail store featuring Phillips Academy and Andover clothing and gifts. Soon after purchasing that establishment in early 2020 – Covid hit a few weeks later! Meanwhile, my design business had been taking on a new phase, working with industrial designers. This transition brought an opportunity into the world of soft goods – (soft products produced from textiles) where my design work took a 360 from creating the lighthearted costumes and kitschy lingerie pieces of the 80’s to the sophisticated and precision crafted medical and military soft goods of the present day or as I like to say, “from jockstraps to Patriot missiles!” Here, once again my patternmaking, and sewing skills were challenged as well as my cherished sewing machine by creating soft good components for products in the medical, fitness, furniture, military and other additional new fields. Lastly, an idea to create a patent pending product – not related to clothing at all – leads me to learning new aspects about a different field. It all comes together as I work, evolve, and continue designing my life.
Episode 3: The 90’s  HIP HOP
Apr 28 2023
Episode 3: The 90’s HIP HOP
The Hip Hop era spans remnants of a crashed economy, a move into my own design studio, an unexpected personal tragedy, the start of a lifelong friendship, some major soul searching and a surprise opportunity; this decade was chock-full. It starts with great excitement and optimism from reaching a long-time goal of opening my own custom leather studio on Boston’s tony Newbury Street only to quickly take a turn that would change everything, including my desire to continue designing. My story goes on with the support of family, faith, a new friend, and everything taking its course to bring new experiences and opportunities including a stint at teaching, and a return to school to extend my education and learn new skills. Somehow, all roads lead back to design and midway through the decade, a surprise knock on my studio door leads to a new and exciting venture re-igniting my love for fashion and music. I’ll explain how that fateful knock refocused my career by teaming up with Boston rapper Antonio Ennis to create my second company Antonio Ansaldi, Inc., a clothing brand partnership focused on urban wear. While the eighties were all rock ‘n’ roll – tighter than tight costumes, the nineties brought hip hop – oversized, big and baggie styles, and a whole new world of celebrities (two and four legged) to dress. Antonio joins in on the conversation and together we recount some of our tabloid worthy events. We will also share how we designed and created leather pieces for music artists Snoop Dog and Mace, furs for Mariah Carey’s canines, unique pieces for sports figures, Mike Tyson, Kenny Anderson, Lawyer Milloy and Willie McGinnis, as well as many other exclusive items for prominent individuals. This venture brought more; a collaboration with the nineties #1 hip hop magazine – The Source, which ignited the brand to international popularity and took it from being a made-to-order custom leather company, to quickly expanding into ready-to-wear leathers, denims, tees, as well as adding wholesale options to the business. Everything was falling into place nicely to end the decade.