MILAN — In appointing Marco Zanini as the new creative director at Rochas, Gibò Co. SpA president Franco Penè said the revamped brand will be anything but a “bonfire of the vanities.”
“We’re not looking to generate editorial hype, because we’re thinking of a sensibly priced luxury brand that caters to the everyday needs of women,” said Penè. “In other words, real clothes that are useful and beautiful. Zanini understands that we don’t want to be a status brand.”
The Italian designer will debut his first effort in Paris in March for fall 2009.
The storied French label was resurrected last month — two years after brand owner Procter & Gamble Co. closed the money-losing fashion house — via a global licensing deal with Gibò to manufacture and distribute Rochas.
Zanini was recruited from Versace to rejuvenate Halston last year, but left that company in July after two seasons and lukewarm reviews. Penè is unfazed by the designer’s short-lived Halston stint, noting he doesn’t really care what happened.
“We liked his sensibility, his penchant for daywear and the fact that he will be fully dedicated to the line without having to divide his energy with a namesake collection,” acknowledged Penè.
Prior to its closure, Rochas was designed by Olivier Theyskens (now at Nina Ricci), although that designer’s expensive red-carpet gowns are the opposite of what Penè imagines for the brand’s comeback. He’s also critical of the recent explosion of logoed and entry–price products championed by top-tier brands to target a larger consumer base. “We want to do the opposite of what luxury multinationals are doing,” said Penè.
As far as distribution of Rochas, Penè aims for no more than 200 sales points worldwide and plans to reach a wholesale volume of 10 million euros, or $12.7 million at current exchange, although given the current state of the global economy, there is no set time frame as to when that might happen.
Favoring craftsmanship over showmanship in terms of brand positioning, Penè wants the clothes to exude an artisanal feeling. “We want to re-create a work method similar to the one adopted by artisans who worked on every single piece,” said Penè.
To that end, Zanini will exploit Gibo’s production facilities that produce apparel, knitwear and accessories for designer firms including Jil Sander, Viktor & Rolf, Paul Smith, John Galliano, Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors.
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
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye