See the difference

Being able to see the difference is a way of speaking the same language.

Simplicity goes to the essential. The essential reveals real quality.
When design is lacking, simplicity looks poorly.

Take an essential top, a basic shape.
Can you see the difference with a garment that apparently looks similar?
Touch it. Can you feel the material?
Do you see the fitting?
Can you feel the quality?

Those who are aligned and share our values don’t need many explanations. They instantly get the message. We speak the same language.
Furthermore, it’s a matter of trust.

The ones who are curious sometimes need time to get in. At least, they search for more information. And that point of communication opens a door.

Those who don’t see any difference from one item to another don’t have the sensibility to go further. Thus, they do not align with our vision of the world. The language is not the same.
In that case, there is no connection.

There’s no need to connect with everyone. Or to be liked by everyone.

A small aligned audience is enough.

The fashion game

All the news we are reading from the fashion universe these days is about acquisitions. Who bought who? The competition is open.

To this end, it seems like it’s a good time for doing great deals, playing the fashion game. This luxury group bought that brand, intending to launch other new labels. And so on, with lots of other news along the same lines.

The fashion game, explained in a few words, goes like this: take the “designer” of the moment, the one who is popular because of his social media buzz rather than his designing skills. Then throw out the bait to a young audience. There’s no better way to reach the mass market quickly.

In other words, the game of exponential growth is not over yet. They act as if the lesson taught by the pandemic has left no trace at all.

Somehow those companies are still telling us that fashion belongs to finance more than creativity.

As a so-called designer now, you don’t need to have your own ideas, given that you can buy or steal them. Of course, the latter is the more frequent case.

And how weird it is to see emerging brands aiming to be acquired by luxury groups. But when they are acquired, very little remains of the original coolness.

What emerges is that no fashion group or designer has the courage to suggest new ideas. Perhaps, they do not even have the intention.
None takes the risk of disrupting the industry. The pattern is the old one. And, marketing seems to be on their side.

Aren’t you tired of DJs designing brands?

Racism is not an option

Every now and then, we feel the urge to step off the carved path of the trails. Please, allow us to do that. There are moments in which only talking about fashion is not enough. We do not live in a bubble, so it’s impossible not to look at what happens around us and not be affected.

Moreover, we have always been very open to discussions in our physical boutique, and the same is true in our online community.

Paola Egonu is a great Italian athlete chosen to carry the Olympic flag in Tokyo. She also became a testimonial for Armani.
Forgetting the fact that she is a real champion, one of the strongest volley players in the world, a group of people have found reasons to complain. Why did they consider it compelling to bring their views to the table? First, she is black. And, second, she had no problem talking about being in love with a woman.
Neither of the points is relevant to her sports abilities or has any connection to sport values. Neither is any of our business.
We should be proud of the champion she is. And that’s final.

Meanwhile, we acknowledge that in Voghera, a League safety councillor has killed a Moroccan man. The immigrant punched him, he replied by shooting him dead. In his defence, he said that the gun fired accidentally. But why was he carrying a gun? And what if the aggressor was Italian?

The reason we address these realities is simple.
In short, that is not the world we want to live in.

We are promoting a community for modern humans – based on mutual respect, acceptance and understanding.

Diversity and inclusion are fundamental values.

It’s important to state it clearly.
If you are racist or homophobe, this is not the place for you.

Details make the difference

Although it is easy to copy high-fashion items, the difference between designer pieces and fast fashion is tangible.

With fast fashion, you get low-quality materials and poor construction (not to mention labour exploitation). Those elements change the final result completely.

By the way, it is well-known that people don’t see details.

Designer collaborations with fast-fashion chains are a way to make money by reaching a broader audience, which otherwise wouldn’t approach the brand.

But what’s left of the original design?

We still remember the first collaboration Karl Lagerfeld did with H&M. There was a lot of hype, so we decided to try. We bought many pieces, also some lingerie-style reminiscent of Chanel. Whenever we had the occasion, we tried on one or the other, but there was always something wrong. Pull one side, pull the other, no way to make the top, or the dress, seem decent.
The fitting was terrible, stitchings and materials too. We ended up wearing some of those pieces as pyjamas.

Since we bought many items, the total amount was not small. Rethinking of it in terms of worth, did it make sense? Wasn’t it better to buy only one valuable piece, which we could wear for years? Rather than wasting money on several pieces we never wore?

Indeed, this is the trick: reproducing a similar shape doesn’t mean tailoring the same construction. It doesn’t imply the same stitching ability and, definitely, not the same materials.

The quality of materials, together with the knowledge in crafting, are what make a piece of clothing look beautiful. And only expert hands can shape the proper fitting.

Change those ingredients, take out the sartorial touch, and instead of a Chanel imitation, you get a rag. Instead of an oversized dress, you get a garbage bag.

Yes, details make a huge difference.

Cannes and the new beauty statement

Most of the time, red carpet outfits have no sense of style or coolness. They send one clear message only: “Please, please, please! Notice me!”

So, the latest edition of the Cannes Film Festival was remarkable. Indeed, it could not go unnoticed. And not for the red carpet outfits, but because this edition signed a turning point in beauty standards.

Unexpectedly, and with a high dose of bravery, several actresses surprised us with their wrinkles or undyed hair. They chose to be who they really are, tired of compromising.
They were fierce, beautiful and effortless.
What a pleasant surprise.

In one of our previous posts, we expressed the need for human faces. In an era dominated by plastic surgery, people completely lost their uniqueness, all having the same characteristics.

Et voilà, here it is, the sign of change! And it was so true. So impressive.

Hellen Mirren, a marvellous trailblazer, this time was not alone. Andie McDowell declared that during the pandemic, she decided not to dye her hair anymore. Jodie Foster – awarded an honorary Palme d’Or for lifetime achievements – looked great with her grey strands.

Finally, we saw women feeling comfortable with their age and therefore having no problem showing it.

Free from usual schemes and self-confident concepts of beauty – this is the most important message they sent.
If men are free to age however they want, why shouldn’t we do it?

And a positive wave has started. We have done everything to deny ageing, while we have to embrace it and live it at our best.
They showed us that we can be beautiful anyway. Beautifully human.

This time, even more than their gowns, we appreciated their attitude. That was a beauty statement.

We applaud you, great women!

The exception to the rule

They say every rule has its exceptions. And, of course, we couldn’t escape. A few days ago, we wrote that fashion Maisons whose original designer has left, lose their meaning.

Indeed, this is not the case with Valentino. Since the duo Piccioli – Chiuri has split from co-designing the brand, Mr Pierpaolo Piccioli didn’t miss a single beat. Though, we cannot say the same about Chiuri’s work.

From the moment he went solo, Piccioli’s design has been a celebration of the Valentino codes. He carefully paid respect to the founder’s work, elaborating the brand DNA while adding a touch of modernity. Elegance has certainly not been lost.

On July 15, we saw the Fall/Winter 21-22 Valentino couture show, streamlined from Venice’s Gaggiandre, Arsenale. What better occasion to find a valid exception to the above rule. The show was a dialogue between fashion and art, presented from a magnificent set-up.

If fashion is not art, it is true that both forms of expression have many aspects in common: creativity, the vital and founding element that determines the whole process. But also time, experimentation, and skilled hands. All these are crucial elements needed to reach a perfect realization.

For the show, Pierpaolo Piccioli collaborated with 17 painters, and the final result was sublime. The overlapping of bold colours was a joy for the eye, a breath of fresh air. The fluid silhouettes and clean-cut lines, the game of form and colours, showed a modern way to make couture.

Impeccable tailoring and know-how. Effortless beauty and elegance.
An expression of art. A real celebration of couture.

The state of fashion & the couture revamp

Top brands are rediscovering and relaunching their couture collections. Or eliminating the diffusion lines, as Valentino did with Red Valentino, for instance.

The couture orientation could be a re-emerged desire for well-done items among tons of junk clothing. A strategy to clean up a collapsed market, focusing on their original identities. Or the research for a more sustainable model. Both possibilities are worthy.

In fashion, we should do like the music bands: can we imagine Queen without Freddy Mercury? or Nirvana without Kurt Cobain?
For instance, why should Margiela make sense designed by someone who has his opposite vision? Although John Galliano is one of the greatest couturiers, Margiela is not Margiela anymore.
What about Balenciaga? or Gucci? Brands lost their identity, and now it’s game over.

In todays’ panorama, we believe historical Maisons should repurpose archival pieces in a modern version to keep alive the designer’s heritage. And no, we are not referring to the so-called “modernity” of the recently relaunched Balenciaga couture line. Was the pigeon toe an example of modernity? We don’t think so.

As conceived nowadays, couture and brands in general, when the designer of the Maison is dead or has left, lose their meaning.
Although there is a vague inspiration coming from the archives, we see very little respect for the creativity and work of the original designer. Instead, a certain arrogance of the newcomers prevails, aiming to show their own vision while disfiguring the original. There are very few exceptions.
So conceived, fashion is simply a way to make money out of the brand name legacy, in addition to an ego game. All the magic is gone.

Since overproduction is killing our planet, couture and demi-couture offer a more controlled and limited production model. The higher quality wouldn’t hurt either.

The return of the “atelier” with a unique selection of worthy pieces and custom-made items is the opposite of the mass distribution model we saw flourishing till now. They would offer value and sustainability.

And maybe we’d see the rebirth of fashion.

Selection vs quantity

Carefully picking out the most suitable items vs quantity is an interesting point. Talking about selection when people are used to a supermarket thinking mode, indeed, is not an easy task.

A while ago, a lady who used to come to our boutique asked to try on an item. When we said her size was sold-out, she replied:
“My size is sold out because you ordered only a few pieces.”

Also, she said it with an ironic grin on her lips, as she intended to belittle our work.

Accidentally and unbeknownst to her, she had hit the point: selecting a few pieces is not a demerit. On the contrary, we firmly believe it is a plus! It grants you uniqueness, which is far better than being the clone of many other people.

In fact, we do it on purpose. To order a few pieces by choosing those of value, the special ones, is an intentional attitude.
We are at the opposite of the fast-fashion concept. Disposable goods have never been for us. Besides, fashion understood as a supermarket makes us shudder.

Years ago, we were already on this path, and this direction is even more explicit now due to the recent events. Going for an evolved style – and lifestyle – means that we don’t need too many things, only the ones that make the difference.

We help you create your unique, distinctive individual style. We do it operating with respect for people and the planet. It’s a vision for a better world. It is not about quantity. Of course, it is not.

We cannot please everyone, and we do not appeal to a mass audience. But we can please people like us, a niche of like-minded individuals who share the same values.

It’s a selection for modern humans.

The cultural element

This is when you go to an event dedicated to sustainability, and one of the first things you hear is a journalist stating that we cannot consume less!

“During the pandemic, we saw what happened, everything stopped. It’s clear that we cannot consume less.”

We looked at each other perplexed: “Are we in the right place?”
If this is the viewpoint of someone invited as a speaker to discuss sustainability, imagine the thoughts of the average consumer.

We could not engage with those people over there, but we take the opportunity to explain our thoughts here.

In fact, we do believe the opposite is quite evident.
Consuming less is one of the most effective ways to save our planet.

It is necessary to find a new economic model to replace capitalism, which has been revealed to be outdated and unsuccessful. Exponential growth is absolutely inconceivable and even harmful now.

Although a new economic model is a fundamental step, we cannot wait, arms crossed, for something to happen.
Sooner or later, the gods of economics and politics will come out with a brilliant idea, a valid substitute. At least, we hope they will.

But in the meantime, maintaining a sustainable level of consumption is crucial. To become aware of what we consume and how we consume must be at the core of our actions.

When it comes to changing the way we live, eat, travel, or shop, culture plays a central role.

Culture comes through education. In the past, we had the excuse that sources, books, and information weren’t accessible. Now we can find whatever we need.

Knowing more about environmental issues and climate change. Discovering more about ethical work and production modes. Understanding material, craftsmanship, quality.

Educating ourselves to become conscious consumers is what we can actively do to enhance our lifestyle and change for the better.

It’s about improving our well-being rather than accumulating things and money with the outcome of waste and exploitation.

Learning more is free, and often it just takes a click!

Que fantastica esta fiesta

It was impossible for us not to dedicate a post to the one and only Raffaella Carrà. She was the heart of our nights out with the rhythm of her happy songs! Our beloved icon suddenly left us on 5 July.

Women owe her a lot. Her humble, empathetic and cheerful personality offered a positive role model inspiring absolute freedom and acceptance. Maybe, for this reason, she became a gay icon too.

Besides, her ironic but never vulgar temper contributed a lot to educate our society, influencing our culture more than any law or government. She taught us her values such as kindness, inclusivity, openness, and always working persistently.

These are some of her quotes:

“To me, the world is not made of gay and straight but of creatures.”

“I am in favor of stepchild adoption, I too grew up with two women.”

“I grew up without a father. He was wealthy but too playboy, and my mother divorced in 1945. I never wanted to get married, and it always pissed me off not being able to adopt children without the obligation of this ring.”

Furthermore, she was the first to unveil her belly button in 1969 on the tv screen, wearing a crop top on bell-bottoms. Her innate elegance allowed her to send messages about female agency with her sex-positive songs.
And perhaps that was the point: her elegance. She was never gross whatever she did, whatever she wore.

Also, this is relevant to the recent controversy about some female Italian singers. They state that they were criticized for their clothing, while men, instead, are free to wear whatever they want.
If this can be true, and in fact, it often is, we have to say that those female singers don’t have even a micro tiny trace of the elegance she naturally possessed.

Elegance, this is what they forget. It allows you to express yourself freely in what you wear, sing or say. Elegance is the key, lost in our times.

Thank you, beautiful soul, for the joy you gifted us.
Rest in peace, Raffaella.