View Slideshow

MILAN — With a small pre-dinner show for 300 guests at the Austrian National Library in Vienna tonight, Antonio Berardi will unveil his first capsule collection for spring 2007 for Wolford AG.

Always eager to experiment with new techniques, yarns and clothing items, Berardi took the creative director position at Wolford last May.

“To me, it was a fantastic way to hone my technical skills,” he said. “For a fashion designer, hosiery is a novelty, something that allows you to play around and experiment.”

Aside from bringing his touch to legwear, Berardi’s mission is to give Wolford a trendier spin, harmonize the various categories in terms of image and grow the ready-to-wear segment, which comprises body suits, tops, blouses, skirts, trousers and knits.

The designer also introduced fibers and fabrics for spring such as floral silk chiffon, Egyptian cotton and cashmere. They will appear in anything from hosiery to lingerie to apparel.

While keeping a clean and fresh hand, the designer partnered lingerie with ready-to-wear, either on the same piece of clothing or by matching the underwear to the clothes. Examples are a pristine cotton sundress with a bra-derived top or a floral body suit peeping out of a matching silk chiffon prairie blouse and a lace-piped cashmere sweater whose scoop neck reveals a matching bra, obviously matched to panties.

Berardi’s arrival consolidates a turnaround program that Wolford laid out a couple of years ago after market research indicated the firm needed to wipe some dust off its looms.

“We learned that our customers were a little older than we expected, so we decided it was time to lure new, younger clients while keeping the existing ones,” said Holger Dahmen, Wolford’s chief executive.

This story first appeared in the July 11, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

load comments
blog comments powered by Disqus