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Gigli Gets Rid of Design Team

Firm cancels Milan show

MILAN — Romeo Gigli has parted company with creative director Gentucca Bini.

This story first appeared in the September 11, 2008 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

But did she jump or was she pushed?

In an e-mail released to the Italian press Thursday, Bini, who was on a three-year contract, said, “For two years I have been artistic director, growing the value of the brand. My work finishes here.”

However, according to sources, Mood Srl, which has operated Romeo Gigli since 2004, fired Bini and her team earlier this month, following disappointing sales and has since subcontracted creative output to a third party.

“There’s no longer an in-house design team,” a person familiar with the situation said. “[Mood] were not happy with Gentucca’s designs, which weren’t selling. They want something more commercial like D&G.”

Bini could not be reached for comment.

On Wednesday, a spokeswoman for Mood denied the rumor, saying, “The only thing that has changed is there will be no runway show during Milan Fashion Week. Instead, there will be a small presentation just for buyers.”