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Family Fun

Missoni, Milan RTW Fall 2010 –

In a season filled with respectable, rational, dressed offerings, some of which I cannot resist myself (there is a white coat at Gucci that is formidable!), the show that I still return to with relish is Missoni. It was a passionate display of pattern, texture, color, and family fun. Prepped by the ad campaign that featured three generations of Missonis, bathed in zigzags, delighting in one another and mugging for photographer Jurgen Teller, one could not help but succumb to the ebullient clan atmosphere of the collection. The throw pieces pinned at various points of the body come down the runway with a defiant spirit as if to say “clean cut camel…not interested!” Those familiar with the Missoni brand color palettes will not be disappointed. The shades of pink, turquoise and green were all there and accounted for, but the surprising surplus of black was new. Intricate noir crocheted creations walked with ease and sex appeal. Fur, this years de rigueur medium, made a scant appearance, mostly as collars that balanced nicely with the blanketed knitwear. Another odd, but effective paring was the addition of shiny accessories, cuffs, sunglasses and neck pieces that supplied a thought provoking contrast to all that thread.


Meet the Missonis. Founding partners Rosita and Ottavio (called Tai) started the Missoni empire in 1953 opening a small knitwear workshop in Gallarate, Italy. Daughter Angela became principal designer 1996, her older brother Vittorio is the company’s marketing director, and Luca is the creative director of the menswear collections and Missoni Sport. Third generation Missonis include Francesco, Margherita (who debuted this year as designer of her first accessories line), Teresa and Marco all whom were on hand for the Fall 2010 Milan show. Each member of this handsome and enchanting family is enough to make one relinquish one’s own heritage to grab a chance to become Made in Italy. It is worth spending some time with the “history” section of the Missoni site to get acquainted with the vast accomplishments of this multi-talented family.

All of this brand madness led me to traipse on over to the newly opened 7,500 sq. ft. Missoni boutique in Beverly Hills. Angela Missoni teamed with architects Patrick Kinmonth and Antonio Monfreda to create a pristine, whitewashed environment to call home. This was the first complete building project for the architects whose previous achievements include Valentino’s retrospective in Rome at ARA PACIS. The building is sheathed with woven slats of white powder coated steel that echo the famous brand’s own knits. Each dress, bikini, men’s sweater, bag and pillow get a chance to be seen in its own right. So much of their work is suited for California casual luxe chic. When a sales associate unfurled a scarf/sarong for me to view, it was an intoxicating close brush with an impulse buy.


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