Pilati joined the Trivero, Italy-based Zegna in January 2013, tapped to add a fashion element to the collections. His departure would come on the heels of a confident fall collection presented in January that received high praise from retailers and that WWD defined “arresting” and “his best yet.” However, sources say Pilati’s couture-like designs were often disconnected from Zegna’s core customer needs.
“It is our policy not to comment on rumors regarding individuals working at or with Zegna,” said a spokesman for the Italian men’s wear giant.
Pilati joined Zegna after exiting Yves Saint Laurent as creative director in March 2012. He was named creative director of Agnona, and head of design at Ermenegildo Zegna, with responsibility for that brand’s fashion show as well as for the Ermenegildo Zegna Couture collection, the latter built on sartorial, hand-stitched suits in luxury fabrics. When Pilati in July left the women’s Agnona brand, controlled by Zegna, he was said to be pursuing other personal projects in women’s ready-to-wear.
The designer, a well-known and seasoned talent with a suave personal style and experience at big brands, has worked in senior design and fabric development positions for a number of Italian design houses, including Miu Miu, Prada and Giorgio Armani.
In light of the announcement earlier today that Alessandro Sartori is leaving Berluti, sources speculate a return to Zegna could be in the cards. Sartori held the role of creative director of Z Zegna for eight years, exiting the company in 2011.