Two years after creative director Francesco Ragazzi came out with his Rizzoli photography tome on California’s skateboard subculture “Palm Angels,” the clothing line it inspired is on its third season, having just presented fall 2016 in Paris. On Thursday, the Milan native was back in Los Angeles for a dinner hosted by Saks Fifth Avenue Beverly Hills at Chateau Marmont to celebrate the line’s exclusive U.S. launch at Saks. “I always wanted to have my own line but I never thought it would be this. Three years after starting the book here as a side project, I never thought I would be in the windows at Saks in Beverly Hills,” he said.
Ragazzi, who is also in charge of the art direction for Moncler, said of adapting his photography into a streetwear line, “If you have a vision you can really translate on very different mediums and this for me is one of them. With the book I could really shape the brand before it even existed. All the codes are in the book, I want to have them in the collection as well.” He pointed to the five glittery gold lines screen printed onto one T-shirt that also featured a black-and-white photo print, which are meant to represent both the golden light of Los Angeles and the lines in a Venice Beach skate park. The motif is also apparent in the gold tuxedo-style stripes on the sides of khaki pants. “I like this post-preppy vibe,” he said. The unisex collection is sold in Saks’ Men’s store, but in some of its other 160 wholesale accounts worldwide, it is merchandised for men and women.
The dinner also appealed to both sexes. The eclectic mix of guests included model Winnie Harlow, recording artist Travis Mills (T. Mills), interior designer Ross Cassidy, DJ Kiss, rapper Angel Haze and pro skateboarders Paul Rodriguez, Dashawn Jordan, and Trevor Colden. Said Ragazzi, “I like to have this mix of cool and young people approaching things differently, like a new generation. I’m very keen to have this as a motto of my brand.”