SUPERMARKET SWEEP: So-Milano marked the opening of its new concept store in Milan with a cocktail celebrating its first featured brand, J.W. Anderson.
The 3,230-square-foot space, facing central Piazza Risorgimento, was filled with merchandise selected by Jonathan Anderson, including exclusive editions, art objects and stationery originally created for his J.W. Anderson Workshops space in east London, in collaboration with artists, ceramic designers and publishers.
“I wanted it to kind of feel a bit like a supermarket, in that there was something you get for free, and something for 3 euros right up to around 100 euros,” the designer said, standing amid a throng of people on the sidewalk in front of the boutique.
Inside, guests picked up free posters, while others checked out Anderson’s Pierce bags and Ruffle booties displayed on spherical forms amid paper cutouts of antique nude male sculptures. A brooch cost around 40 euros, or $45 at current exchange, while a pack of stickers went for 3 euros, or $3.35, Anderson said.
“The idea was just to kind of mix everything up a bit, and it’s what we’ve been doing at the Workshops in London, so we thought we’d bring everything here,” he said. “The idea is to be a bit more collaborative.”
That chimes with the spirit of the store, which was opened by two Italian retailers, Giordano Ollari, founder of Parma’s O’ store, and Aldo Carpentieri, owner of the Sicilian luxury boutique Stefania Mode. So-Milano plans to carry around eight brands per year on a rotating basis, with Victoria Beckham up next.
Anderson, who worked in Milan for Prada and at Versus Versace, said the opening of the store reflects the city’s momentum. “I love Milan, and it’s really changing since the Prada Foundation opened — and stores like here. I think the city is starting to gain more energy,” he said.