PARIS — The revival of Schiaparelli is finally gathering steam.
It was one of the most talked-about collections during Paris Couture Week, with creative director Marco Zanini receiving critical plaudits for his debut effort. “We have a full schedule of appointments for clients already,” he said in an interview. Farida Khelfa, a spokeswoman for the house, also cited a slate of invitations to bring the collection to other cities for order-taking and special events.
But on Monday, the buzzed-about couture moment was becoming a distant memory for Zanini, knee-deep in fittings in Milan since Friday for another Schiaparelli collection he’s to present in March during Paris Fashion Week.
Diego Della Valle, who bought the trademarks and archives of the late Paris couturier in May 2006, may have taken his time reactivating one of the most revered names in 20th-century fashion, but he’s making up for lost time. Della Valle has dubbed Zanini’s next effort “prêt-à-couture.”
Zanini described it as a “very high-end” range of ready-to-wear that will be sold exclusively at Schiaparelli’s Place Vendôme salon and offering levels of service similar to couture. While he wouldn’t get into design specifics, Zanini said he plans to propose a “complete wardrobe” for everyday life, whereas his couture is to remain about “very special items” that are “real and wearable” yet “very dreamy and full of fantasy.”
Della Valle ignited the Schiaparelli revival project last year, tapping acclaimed couturier Christian Lacroix — now focused on stage costumes and hotel design — to create 18 dresses as a onetime tribute to the late Italian designer Elsa Schiaparelli. They were displayed at Les Arts Décoratifs in Paris during July’s couture week, but never offered for sale — much to Khelfa’s chagrin. “I would love to have one of those outfits,” she said on Monday.
Famed for the shocking pink color and fashions with a Surrealist touch, Schiaparelli was seen as a key rival of Gabrielle Chanel in the Thirties and known for designs heavily influenced by Surrealist art, such as her Shoe hat and Lobster dress. She closed her Paris house in 1954 and died in 1973. Dormant for decades, the brand gained major exposure in 2012 when New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art hosted the exhibition “Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations” at the Costume Institute.
And now it’s up to Zanini, an Italian designer who cut his teeth at Versace, Halston and, most recently, Rochas, to interpret the storied name. Rather than reference Schiaparelli’s design legacy directly, Zanini said his guiding light would be the woman herself: cosmopolitan, witty, irreverent. That means waving the flag for fashions that are unconventional and nonconformist.
His spring couture collection included such unusual styles as a striped T-shirt dress in micro sequins, an off-the-shoulder gown in a loud medallion print and reversible evening jackets, one side with ruffles or feathers around the hip line, which create a peplum effect on the other side.
Needless to say, Zanini would be delighted if such looks would be embraced during awards season in Hollywood. “Of course, I would prefer to see more individuality on the red carpet,” he said. “I hope Schiaparelli, very humbly, could be a different choice.”
Khelfa suggested the unconventional credo applies to a business model that guards exclusivity over growth. “We want to keep it small and specific — and poetic, not too business minded,” she said. “We’re trying to do something different.”
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews