MILAN — The new owner of Krizia will unveil fall designs for her brands Marisfrolg and ZhuChongYun on Saturday in Beijing. Ahead of those two runway shows, and in her first interview since WWD’s report of Krizia’s acquisition by Chinese fashion retailer Shenzhen Marisfrolg Fashion Co. Ltd. last month, owner Zhu Chongyun discussed her views on the storied Italian brand. Zhu succeeds Krizia founder and creative director Mariuccia Mandelli, who is passing the baton after six decades in business. Zhu’s first collection for Krizia will bow in February in Milan. As reported, Marisfrolg is based in Shenzhen but Krizia will continue to be based in Milan. Although financial details of the transaction, which is expected to be finalized in the spring, were not disclosed, sources peg the deal at around 35 million euros, or $48.6 million at current exchange.Zhu is expected to revamp the brand and, over the next five years, to open Krizia flagships in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Chengdu, and gradually reopen units in the most important cities in Europe, Japan and the U.S.As for her Chinese lines, Marisfrolg Fashion was founded in 1993 and last year reported sales of 2.56 billion yuan, or $418 million. The group controls more than 400 directly operated stores that carry the high-end, contemporary Marisfrolg brand in top-end shopping malls and department stores in China, South Korea, Singapore and Macau. The Krizia line will not be distributed in those stores.Here, Zhu discusses her plans for Krizia:WWD: What drew you to Krizia and what does the brand stand for? What is the label’s strength?Zhu Chongyun: To me, Krizia is classy, elegant and tasteful. I appreciate the brand not only because of the glory it has achieved in the past but also because the style of Krizia matches perfectly my own aesthetics and taste of design.WWD: Mariuccia Mandelli made history with Krizia. What is her main talent and what do you particularly admire?Z.C.: Her vision and pioneering spirit, the way she managed to express attitude, strength and powerfulness of women through her works. I admire what Mrs. Mandelli has done for Krizia in the past. Based on what Mrs. Mandelli has built, it will be my challenge and responsibility to make the brand even better.WWD: What is the brand awareness in China today?Z.C.: For the public in China. Krizia is not very well-known, while for the fashion community it is recognized as an iconic brand.WWD: What are your projects for the brand both in terms of design and distribution?Z.C.: In terms of design, I will spend one year studying the archive pieces of Krizia, finding its spirit and characteristics, try to draw the key elements from the style and combine them with modern twists that correspond to the current trend. In terms of retail, we have plans to relaunch the flagship store in Milan, then gradually reopen flagship stores in the most important cities of Europe, Japan, USA and open new flagship stores in China.WWD: Who will design the line?Z.C.: Me, and my future design team for Krizia. We will recruit excellent designer talents worldwide to form the new design team. I will work together with them to restore the past glory of Krizia. We will rebuild it as a pure Made in Italy brand. The collection will be designed and produced entirely in Italy with Italian fabrics.WWD: Krizia was a pioneer in expanding its product offer in terms of licensing and a different range of lines. Is this something you would like to pursue or would you like to focus on the Krizia brand alone?Z.C.: At the start phase, we will for sure focus only on the Krizia line. We will have to bring Krizia to the heights that it would have achieved first. Starting from there we will assess the past business models and define the next steps.WWD: Are your plans in women’s wear mainly?Z.C.: Yes, women’s wear and accessories.
“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