TORONTO – If Marcello Mastroianni were alive today he’d make a great poster boy for Eleventy, Italy’s youthful luxury fashion brand. Yet the same could be said of “Game of Thrones” 30-year-old star Kit Harington, or timeless actresses like Jane Fonda or Dame Helen Mirren — and for one simple reason: “Looking old is not in Eleventy’s DNA.”With that smiling assertion, Eleventy’s cofounder Marco Baldassari, 48, tours the softly hued interior of the company’s first North American flagship, surveying every last detail being put into place before its opening in Yorkville Village here.“I wanted this space to feel like a house that is welcoming and kind. That is also in our DNA,” said Baldassari, who reflects Eleventy’s ideal with his finely tailored blazer, V-neck T-shirt and muted khaki pants from the company’s most recent collection.“Try this,” he said, grabbing a perfume bottle from a nearby counter and pumping it into the air.“This creates that special ambiance I love,” Baldassari grinned as he inhaled the rich aroma and returned his attentions to the artfully displayed men’s jackets and short silhouetted coats done in dove-soft grays and blacks, the women’s coats in cherry red – Eleventy’s color of the season – and the burnished brass shelves topped with gloves, scarves, fur-trimmed ankle-boots and other accessories.Ever since he and cofounder Paolo Zuntini launched Eleventy in 2007, the company has given 35- to 45-year-old professionals a quality and style that is on par with the world’s top luxury brands, but at prices that are a third to half of what consumers would normally pay.Eleventy’s Italian-made fashions, footwear and accessories are also produced in a manner that is environmentally sustainable. That, too, has lured consumers to the label, which currently operates 19 single-brand boutiques worldwide, including its new Toronto flagship.“Marco first focused on neutrals as the basis of the collection’s color palette. These colors in their natural state require far less dyeing processes to reach their final results. This significantly reduces the amount of water used, as well as fewer washes,” said Eleventy’s North American president Geoff Schneiderman. “Marco also encourages factories to work with bio-friendly dyes and chemical-free processing.”As a result, Eleventy has experienced 30 percent growth year over year, a trend Schneiderman projects will continue through 2018 based on recent meetings with wholesale partners.Indeed, for Baldassari, Toronto’s launch represents an optimistic step toward the future and turning his small- to mid-sized company into a global power.According to Schneiderman, Toronto’s flagship was the result of Eleventy’s successful performance at TNT Men’s stores. “When TNT realized the opportunity based on success of sales, they approached Earl Rotman, the chairman of Eleventy USA, and I with the opportunity of creating a complete world of Eleventy,” Schneiderman said.Now operated in partnership with TNT, Schneiderman said this format could potentially roll out with other successful wholesale partners in North America.Though no other flagships have been revealed, Vancouver and Montreal are on the company’s radar. But as Baldassari said, “If any city will be home to our next flagship it will be New York. All the world comes to New York.”
In honor the @CFDA’s announcement of @iamnaomicampbell receiving the Fashion Icon Award at the 2018 #CFDAAwards, which will take place on June 4, here’s a #tbt of the supermodel on @michaelkors’ runway in 1991. #wwdfashion #wwdarchive (📷: George Chinsee)
“I was making the guacamole when my scout saw me,” says model @stuckinteenage on being discovered just six months ago while working at @chipotlemexicangrill. Since then Williams has signed with @dnamodels, walked in her first show at @calvinklein and landed on the cover of @vogueitalia – a high point of any model’s career. To read @lisajlockwood’s full interview with the model on her experiences thus far, head to WWD.com – link in bio. (📷: George Chinsee)
“I love the idea of dialogue, period. It’s where I’ve always gotten my inspiration from: hearing other women speak, their journeys and their paths,” said @hereisgina, who delivered the keynote speech during @sxsw for @createcultivate in partnership with @fossil. For her two panels, Rodriguez chose female empowering, female-led and female entrepreneurs to focus on. Head to WWD.com to read more about her thoughts on Time’s Up, growing up in a family of women and why we “need a girls’ club.” #wwdeye #sxsw (📷: @jgreenery)
Leading luxury brand are shaking things up to keep up with streetwear. Case in point: the arrival of @mrkimjones as artistic director of @diorhomme. Jones, who succeeds @Kris_Van_Assche, is seen as one of the handful of designers who can actually straddle the luxury and streetwear worlds — which could lead to even more changes at established brands. What could this mean for the rest of the menswear landscape? Head to WWD.com to find out what experts predict #wwdfashion (📷: @franckmura)
“It’s like buying groceries. You’re going to buy the best mango, the best mozzarella, the best things. You have to, or others are going to take it all,” said @gabrielahearst on why she uses only the finest fabrics. Last week, Hearst received her first @cfda nomination for Womenswear Designer of the Year, and earlier this month she opened a permanent showroom in Paris. To read @jessiredale’s interview with the designer and find out why this is shaping up to be a big year for her, head to WWD.com. #wwdfashion (📷: @francoisgoize)
“It’s an interesting thing, playing a younger version of your mother. It’s an interesting concept. I adore my mom and love her in every capacity, but it was just something that had never crossed my mind,” says @anniemstarke on playing a young Joan Castleman in “The Wife.” The same role will be played by her mother Glenn Close. Read more about her growing up in the film industry as the daughter of producer John H. Starke and Close and what she has planned for the future #wwdeye (📷: @nataliamantini)
@asics is launching a new streetwear sneaker inspired by its latest ambassador, @steveaoki. The Hyper-Kenzen x Aoki, which will launch at @footlocker stores exclusively tomorrow, is a slip-on style that incorporates the brand’s proprietary Gel technology through beads integrated into the midsole for comfort and endurance. Read the full story on WWD.com.