After designing a spring capsule collection for Shanghai Tang in an advisory capacity, Massimiliano Giornetti, former creative director of Salvatore Ferragamo, has escalated his role in the company to creative director. Last year, Italian entrepreneur Alessandro Bastagli purchased Shanghai Tang from Compagnie Financière Richemont in a joint venture with Hong Kong private equity fund Cassia Investments. Bastagli brought Giornetti onboard. “Alessandro is a close friend of mine,” Giornetti said. “We have always been sharing cultural elements and a passion for antiques. I’m a collector of Chinese antiques and have always been mixing and melding Italian furniture with traditional Chinese carpets.”

His fall collection for the brand also involved a blend of classic Milanese style with totems of the Far East. For example, a quilted puffer cape with a Mandarin collar was worn over a black and gold top and tiger jacquard pants cinched with a wide leather corset belt. A men’s Windbreaker was printed with a Chinese dragon on the back and a tailored black coat with a neat Mandarin collar was embroidered with colorful peonies and poppies and interspersed with leopard paneling. Despite a multitude of sporty references, the look was undeniably dressed up and polished, as if to appeal to a hybrid of the classic Milanese and Chinese lady. In fact, the designer sees the Chinese client as of the utmost important. “The Chinese are the most important luxury consumer,” he said. “It’s very interesting that they’re ready to get back to their heritage in this moment. So it’s interesting to fuse examples of Chinese and Milanese culture.”

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