PARIS — Signaling a hyper-exclusive business strategy, Schiaparelli is to sell its first collection of high-end ready-to-wear exclusively at a by-appointment boutique in Paris — and editors will discover it at the same time as customers.
Dubbed “prêt-à-couture,” the range of clothes and a few accessories is to be unveiled in June for the fall 2014 season at a 2,500-square-foot space within Schiaparelli’s headquarters at 21 Place Vendôme here.
“It is in our own luxury. When clients will come here, they will feel it is a truly special moment in a couture house, something intimate, exclusive and precious,” said Camilla Schiavone, general manager of Schiaparelli, which presented a couture collection in January, the latest step in reviving a storied brand that had been dormant for decades.
Schiavone noted the debut rtw, tentatively scheduled for a presentation during Paris Fashion Week later this month, would only be shown to the press when the merchandise reaches the store.
“The idea is to be in line with the real season,” Schiavone explained. “It is our way to define the pace of a couture house today. We started with haute couture in January with the spring-summer season that was available to order immediately. Now we will start with prêt-à-couture — again available immediately.”
The private boutique will be in the historic home of Schiaparelli, a building that also houses its couture salons, studio, atelier and offices.
Prices of the rtw and accessories have yet to be finalized, with Schiavone suggesting Schiaparelli would pursue an at-its-own-pace development, dovetailing with the founder’s provocative ethos.
“Our independence and irreverence make us willing to follow a schedule that makes sense, not rushing anything, following and respecting seasons and clients, presenting projects when they are ready, taking the necessary time to develop collections, etc.,” she said.
Born in Rome in 1890, Elsa Schiaparelli was seen as a key rival of Gabrielle Chanel, 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.
Della Valle bought the trademarks and archives of the late couturier in May 2006 via a personal holding and has been reviving it slowly, last year tapping couturier Christian Lacroix to do a one-off tribute range for exhibition only.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast