MILAN — Wolford is launching yet another collaboration — and this one is close to home.
After launching capsule collections with Mugler, GCDS, Alberta Ferretti and Amina Muaddi over the past year, the high-end Austrian hosiery brand looked at parent Lanvin Group’s roster of labels for its new tie-up, teaming up with Sergio Rossi.
Both boasting a 70-year-long heritage and expertise, the companies joined forces on a day-to-night, seven-item line that includes provocative, suspender-like tights; socks with crystal embellishments and emblazoned with both logos, and formfitting tights in boldly colored Lycra or covered in rhinestones. Two seductive jersey catsuits — one with a heart-shaped neckline, the other with a plunging V-cut on the back — and second-skin, over-the-knee knit boots complete the collection.
“Sergio Rossi and Wolford represent a perfect synergy, both have been defining the bottom half of the body for nearly a century,” said Silvia Azzali, chief commercial officer of the hosiery company. She described the tie-up as “a natural progression, indicative of our ever-increasing fashion influence, combining strengths to offer ever more creative product value.”
The collection will launch on Wednesday at both companies’ stores and e-commerce platforms as well as at a selection of international retailers, including Harrods, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Mytheresa and LuisaViaRoma, among others. Prices range from 95 euros for the suspender tights and socks to 795 euros for the boots.
To further mark the launch and celebrate the line’s sensual appeal, a dedicated campaign inspired by photographs by Helmut Newton — who worked for both companies throughout his career — has been released. Styled by Sandy Armeni, model Cate Underwood fronts the images set against New York’s skyscrapers, facing the camera of photographer Haris Farsarakis.
“Paying homage to maestro Helmut Newton by reinterpreting his art through the [legacy] of both brands with whom he partnered is a dream come true, bringing his legacy and our fashion destiny round in full circle,” said Evangelie Smyrniotaki, best known online as Style Heroine, who earlier this year joined the Italian footwear company as artistic director.
As reported, Wolford has revved up its collaboration game after 15 years of being “a sleeping beauty,” as Azzali put it. The latest tie-ups with Mugler and GCDS have helped the company to reach new customer clusters and boosting its brand awareness.
However, Wolford has a long tradition of teaming with other brands, having forged ties first with Chantal Thomass in 1983, followed by 1989 collaborations with Thierry Mugler and Jean Paul Gaultier. Giorgio Armani, Zac Posen, Vivienne Westwood and Emilio Pucci also followed over the years.
Lanvin Group was formerly known as Fosun Fashion Group, the fashion arm of the Chinese multinational conglomerate Fosun International Ltd. The group switched names last year, when it also welcomed new investors.
A few months before the change of name, Fosun acquired 100 percent of Sergio Rossi SpA from Absolute Luxury Holding Srl, an independently managed subsidiary of European investment house Investindustrial. The deal strengthened the group’s portfolio, which also includes Italian menswear company Caruso and American fashion brand St. John, in addition to Wolford and Lanvin.
In particular, Fosun acquired a majority stake in Wolford in 2018, right after taking over Lanvin.
As reported last month, ahead of its December IPO Lanvin Group revealed its 2022 interim results and an updated company valuation in a recent amendment to its registration statement with the SEC. Heading into a roadshow in Hong Kong, South Korea and the U.S., the Fosun International Ltd.-owned luxury fashion company lowered its pre-money equity valuation from $1.25 billion to $1 billion.
In the first half of 2022, Lanvin Group’s revenues grew 73 percent to 202 million euros compared to the same period in 2021. Wolford, which was the group’s biggest brand in terms of sales in 2021, saw its revenues increase 29 percent to 54 million euros in the first half of the year.