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PARIS — Emanuel Ungaro SAS and Giles Deacon said Thursday that they have “mutually decided” to end their collaboration.
This story first appeared in the September 16, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
It is understood the spring-summer 2012 collection, to be paraded Oct. 3 at Salle Wagram, will reflect the work of the in-house team.
“We have a hugely talented design and merchant team in place to mine and further develop this heritage,” said Jeffry Aronsson, the American turnaround specialist who joined Ungaro as chief executive officer last June. “We are all aligned with and dedicated to our mission to prepare Mr. Ungaro’s legacy to be perpetuated.”
Aronsson, who has been ceo at Donna Karan International, Marc Jacobs International and Oscar de la Renta, has yet to elaborate on his strategy for the French house, founded in 1965 and synonymous with feminine frills, vibrant prints and the color fuchsia.
However, he told WWD, “We are all here to serve the brand in a modern way. I make new discoveries every day about the talent within these walls.”
Providing a glimpse of its future direction, during Fashion’s Night Out on Sept. 8, Ungaro presented a selection of groovy vintage jewelry from its archives, designed by the late artist Oskar Gustin for the house in the Sixties and Seventies.
Aronsson said the brand would strive to be both “modern and rooted in the past.”
London-based Deacon, who is slated to present his signature Giles line on Monday during London Fashion Week, presented two collections for Ungaro, recently steering the brand in a sexed-up direction.
Reached on Thursday, Deacon said: “I’ve been having some serious meetings with potential investors over recent months about developing the brand potential for Giles, especially in fine jewelry and accessories. Those talks are progressing well, and they are in advanced stages.”
In recent years, Ungaro has experimented with a range of rejuvenation formulas, including a short-lived attempt to jump-start the brand by installing tabloid sensation Lindsay Lohan as artistic adviser.
Entrepreneur Asim Abdullah has controlled the Ungaro brand since 2005, when he bought it from Salvatore Ferragamo. Since that time, its has seen an array of designers come and go: Vincent Darré, Peter Dundas, Esteban Cortazar and Estrella Archs, who had been hired to work beside Lohan.