MILAN — Giorgio Armani spoke his mind on Thursday — and the gloves may be off again.
As Italy’s fashion brands join forces to revamp Milan Fashion Week, and following Italy’s Chamber of Fashion invitation earlier this week for Armani and Dolce & Gabbana to consider joining the association, the designer explained the reasons behind his decision to remain a nonmember, “for now.” The main one relates to Italian brands that hold their shows outside of Milan.
Underscoring that a note addressed some time ago to the chamber’s president, Mario Boselli, had not been “transferred in any way” to the media, Armani felt that it was nonetheless necessary to clarify his position.
The designer started by explaining that for several years, in response to the chamber’s specific request, he’d scheduled the show for his main collection on a “strategic” day of the calendar — the last, so that the press would stay in Milan until the end of fashion week. RELATED STORY: Brands Aim to Raise Milan's Profile >>
“Naturally, this has over time created different problems, such as, for example, in some cases, the absence of some of the most important journalists from my shows,” noted Armani.
He acknowledged the chamber’s efforts to strengthen Milan’s role and “prestige that it always had in fashion.” Fashion, he said, that is “Italian creativity, and not the events and parties organized in Milan by some Italian brands that show abroad.” Such events, he said, are complementary but not essential.
Armani said the effort to revitalize Milan Fashion Week was “a good initiative” and that he shared the chamber’s goals. However, he said that in order for Milan to be “an important hub of international fashion,” it is necessary for “the most important names in the sector to maintain or [return]” to Milan as the only opportunity to present their lines.
“I realize that this would mean for some brands to review their company policies and to also accept some compromises, the same compromises or sacrifices that I have made so that the shows would last six days. In fact, I have always believed that it was important to avoid being conditioned or pressured from abroad in the organization of our calendar,” said Armani.
The designer added that he was “firmly convinced” it was “absolutely necessary” for relevant brands that are now showing outside of Italy to return to Milan in order to provide “a really important signal.” He stressed that has been a condition for him joining the chamber for years because it would be highly “symbolic of a new spirit” in the sector.
“If maisons such as Gucci and Fendi, now owned by French groups, maintain their shows in Milan, it is a contradiction” that as the Camera plans its relaunch, “not all Italian brands wouldn’t do the same,” said Armani.
The designer concluded by pledging his support for the chamber, its members and Italian fashion in general.
Breaking News: @louisvuitton's men's artistic director @mrkimjones is leaving the French fashion house after nearly 7 years. Jones joined Louis Vuitton in 2011, following a three year tenure as creative director of British luxury goods brand Alfred Dunhill. Jones is to exit Louis Vuitton after showing his fall 2018 collection for the brand in Paris on Thursday. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
For men’s fall 2018, @giuseppezanotti drew on elements from streetwear, sport, biker, combat and rock ‘n’ roll. Pictured here are a pair of shoes from the collection, featuring zippers, rhinestones, and silver hardware. Head to WWD.com to see a roundup of the accessories from Milan’s men’s fall 2018 shows. #wwdfashion (📷: Andrea Delb)
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of @ralphlauren’s snowboarding collection, the brand is mining its archives. The iconic brand is reintroducing vintage styles and dropping new designs for a color capsule that will be available in Ralph Lauren stores and @openingceremony on January 25. The capsule will consist of 10 pieces, including the Snow Beach Pullover, pictured here, which is a collector’s item that rapper Raekwon wore in Wu-Tang Clan’s “Can It Be All So Simple” video. #wwdfashion (📷: Tom Gould)
For @rochasofficial’s pre-fall 2018 collection, creative director Alessandro Dell’Acqua channeled the sophisticated and intriguing Catherine Denevue in the film “Belle de Jour.” Polished collarless coats, midi skirts, suits and ’60s graphic motifs were all featured in the collection, adding a sense of discreet luxury. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion
“We tried to produce clothing of that couture quality, but the most daunting part was that we only had a matter of days [to do it],” said costume designer Lou Eyrich, who recreated Gianni Versace’s iconic looks for @americancrimestoryfx. Eyrich searched online retailers and vintage shops for original pieces from the design house and for @penelopecruzoficial, who plays Donatella Versace. Head to WWD.com to read how she created the Versace world. #wwdfashion
Only three months after her stellar debut catwalk season, @kaiagerber has inked her first big design collaboration –– with @karllagerfeld. The collection blends Lagerfeld’s Parisian chic aesthetic and the model’s signature West Coast casual style via RTW, accessories, footwear and more. The #KarlLagerfeldxKaia collection will launch in September with a series of events. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews