Mon, January 20 2020 » Fashion Blog
Art for Earth
#UseTheExisting, for Zegna, is an all-encompassing mindset that starts from fabric and extends to clothing and beyond. Ermenegildo Zegna XXX is the vanguard laboratory where, under the artistic direction of Alessandro Sartori, this plurality of actions coalesces into one multifaceted, ever-evolving whole.
This season, even the show’s scenography uses the existing: an immersive installation, hosted in a former Milanese foundry, has been devised in collaboration with multi-media American artist Anne Patterson and made of thousands of ribbons derived from leftover Zegna fabrics. It consists of a massive suspended cube – a play of colour, matter and light – that looks solid but is actually transparent. Giving the material an immaterial quality, it invites viewers to engage and interact, not only with the eyes.
In this geometric forest of ribbons, the Ermenegildo Zegna XXX Winter 2020 collection materializes. A redefinition of tailoring captures the spirit of the season, as the Zegna sartorial know-how is explored in new, hybrid directions. The silhouette is neat and layered; the sum of the parts and garments is accentuated; ergonomic details such as flaps and patch pockets add a utilitarian slant.
Three-button suits with slightly boxy, one-breast-and-a-half jackets and tapered trousers are worn under puffy blousons; zip-up overshirts with low collar lines replace traditional shirting. The tailored waistcoat makes a comeback, as a passe-partout, with or without the suit. A process of constant morphing defines evolved shapes: wraparound, belted blazers; voluminous coats with deep back pleats; coat/parka fusions; shirts that double as short-sleeved blousons.
Fabrics get more and more experimental, further expanding the #UseTheExisting approach in weaves and mixes of natural with synthetic fibres. Patterns such as moirè, macro check and digitalized landscapes are rendered in print, jacquard and devorè techniques – alone, or mixed – playing with layers and scales. Even plain fabrics like recycled cashmere flannel or Achillfarm, the suiting wool made entirely from the remnants of suit-making, are highly innovative.
Calf leather is laser-patterned, hand-cut and printed, or distresses and tumbled. A special series of hand-woven, intensely tactile textiles has been developed with the San Patrignano community.
Accessories are pragmatic: bold-soled, polished boots and derbies, oversized bum-bags, soft bags. The newest brand icon INSTA-PACK, a functional crossbody bag inspired by photographers’ attitude, features sartorial details and a Zegna vintage logo from 1980 created by the graphic designer Bob Noorda.
The collaboration with Leica, the legendary German high-end manufacturer of cameras and sport optics products, translates into a desirable array of camera bags, holders and straps that is part of a broader dialogue between the two brands and that will further evolve into photographic projects aimed at portraying modern masculinity through women’s eye.
The metamorphic play of textures and shapes is captured by the muted palette of neutral tones of plaster, sand stone, cloudy sky, brown quartz and dark loden highlighted by touches of rose gold, copper, ember red and peacock blue and finished by matte black.
“At Zegna I have the privilege to experiment at every level, from the mix of fibres to the evolved tailoring shapes – says Alessandro Sartori – It is all about reshuffling or hybridizing categories, breaking boundaries in order to explore new territories: this is our new tailoring lexicon. One experimentation leads to the next, in one seamless dialogue, always keeping in mind that our art should always respect the earth. That’s our mission, as both humans and fashion-makers”.
The installation Art for Earth by Anne Patterson will be open to the public until January 31st 2020.
Mon, January 20 2020 » Fashion Blog
Tue, June 18 2019 » Fashion Blog
An immense industrial building in despair is the site for the Ermenegildo Zegna XXX show. The runway unfolds below extremely high ceilings that once hosted Area Falck: a monument to steely modernity that over the years slowly turned into a metropolitan wasteland. The dismissed area, however, will soon be re-qualified by Milanosesto into a hub for health and science, along with green and residential areas, gaining a new continuity with the city and a new meaning, reverting from waste to opportunity. As such, it will be included again in the metropolitan fabric, including people within it. It is the same philosophy Zegna is applying to textile resources, with the commitment to continue to create new fabrics from existing ones, and the same drive Zegna applies to re-thinking tailoring for the modern world. #UseTheExisting is the byword.
“It is our duty as denizens of this world to live responsibly - says Zegna’s Artistic Director Alessandro Sartori - I want to do it using the creative means I have at my disposal, which extend from the materiality of fabric-making, to the exquisite technicality of tailoring to the highly communicative aspect of show-making. Everything is connected, and everything conveys the same idea: we do not need to create the new from scratch, but we can reuse and reinvent the existing, getting progressive fabrics out of discarded ones, translating traditional techniques into innovative lifetime tailoring, turning an abandoned place into an area of creation”.
A sharp industrial sensibility comes to the fore this season, channeled by the pragmatic suits composed of blousons, shirts or polo-shirts worn with matching trousers. Sartori sticks to an agenda rooted in tailoring’s essence, morphing tradition into something suited to the pace of a hyper connected, global generation. The silhouette is neat: boxy blousons, voluminous coats, sleek three-button blazers and slim one-button jackets with 3D patch pockets are paired with lean yet soft trousers or fuller ones. Generous pockets migrate from the sportier items onto tailored ones while tailored details move to sport pieces, suggesting a mix of categories that expands the possibilities of use.
Knits are building blocks that increase the modularity of modern dressing. Firm yet extremely light fabrics – wools, technical silks, – enhance the precision of the lines and the weightlessness of the sartorial construction, with flattened crinkles, photoprints of graphic assemblages and progressive stripe patterns giving rhythm to the surfaces. Macro chiné motifs have a painterly feel, mineral dyes add depth to denim.
The #UseTheExisting mindset is a brand’s commitment to use more and more wool and technical fabrics developed by the Zegna textile division with innovative processes from pre-existing sources. The “Achill” suit, entirely made with wool remnants from Zegna’s Achill farm, discarded during the process of suit making and then remixed and rewoven, fully closes the circle of traceability and sustainability. In keeping with the functional mood, accessories are pragmatic: bold-soled printed boots or derbies; signature Claudio sneakers; wearable notebooks and pouches in small geometric shapes.
The sense of industrial elegance is rounded by the mix of mineral hues of cement, steel, carbon and matt black with earthy tones of brass, rust, red blaze, sand and matt gold and light notes of nude, aqua, leaf green, teal and oxidized copper.
Transformation comes to the fore as just another aspect of inclusiveness: a Zegna pillar through and through.
Mon, June 17 2019 » Fashion Blog
Fri, January 25 2019 » Fashion Blog
Walks of life
Life, streamed. A makeshift runway creates a tangle of crossing paths in the open spaces of the hall of Milano Centrale, the railway station that’s a landmark of the city. A place of endless passage, where individuals of all walks of life have met for almost a century, and continue to do so every hour of every day, arriving and departing. This place fueled on diversity acts as the lively backdrop of a collection that is a connection of diversities.
“Borders keep being narrowed throughout the world – says Zegna Artistic Director Alessandro Sartori – I felt the urge to advocate the power of openness and multiplicity through my own means as a fashion designer, expressing awareness and responsibility at every step of the creative process, from textile-making to devising new categories of clothing to the staging of the fashion show in such a meaningful place. In doing so, I keep perfecting my vision of the contemporary metropolitan wardrobe: an idea of tailoring for a cross-generation of global customers”
This season, a soft sense of formality comes to the fore, attuned to the industrial drum of the concrete jungle to match the needs of fast, connected lives. Categories are mixed and hybridized: jackets have outerwear pockets; shirts become jackets in boxy, functional volumes; blousons sport tailored collars; cargo pants are sartorially inclined. Even the quilted puffer jackets are constructed in the tailoring atelier, gaining an elevated touch. The silhouette is personal, effortless and taut.
Outerwear, either long or cropped, is dramatic and voluminous, with bubbly bombers, quilted parkas with detachable collars and knit overcoats; jackets have lean, longer volumes, concealed closures and geometric pockets; full trousers narrow towards the elasticated bottom. Knit is a building block that offers further textural stimulation. The energy of the connection is highlighted by the spirited mix of patterns: jacquards singularly adapted to each garment; textural weaves of cashmere, paper and leather; slogans and metropolitan scenes turned into bold visual abstractions either as prints or jacquards.
Looks are grounded on bold-soled zippered boots and multi-material sneakers, with the iconic Cesare being available for complete customization as #MyCesare is launched online on the night of the show. Those seeking to personalise with My Cesare can do so in-store, at selected Ermenegildo Zegna stores worldwide, and online post-show on Farfetch and WeChat. In keeping with the assertive functional mood, bags are roomy and geometric, with modular solutions.
Fusion and manipulation are the bywords fabric-wise, too. Under the slogan #UseTheExisting, the collection, supported by the Zegna textile division, is almost entirely made with exclusive wool, cashmere and nylon fabrics created with innovative processes from pre-existing sources. The result is a luxuriously supple yet responsible fabrications that are recycled as well as recyclable. The exclusive fabrics give a dense, textural shimmer to a metropolitan palette of white, Felt, Commissar and Warsaw greys, Beluga black, Notte blue, khaki, Syberian green, lit by touches of Absinthe and Citrine quartz and amalgamated into fused compositions.
Diversities get connected, at every level, and streamed live across all the screens in Milano Centrale for passersby to enjoy and further connect.
Credits: Alessandro Sartori Artistic Direction, Wladimir Schall Music, Bureau Betak Event Design Direction and Production
Mon, January 21 2019 » Fashion Blog
Thu, June 28 2018 » Fashion Blog
A narrow catwalk runs in the distance between the pools facing the Oscar Niemeyer building which houses the Mondadori headquarters. This remarkable piece of architecture looks once monumental and immaterial, as if suspended, acting as a telling backdrop for a collection that marries sharpness and functional ease with a pervading sense of lightness.
Alessandro Sartori keeps perfecting his vision of the contemporary metropolitan wardrobe, fusing the performance and speed of sports with the refinement, attention to detail and precious fabrications of couture tailoring. Turning the atelier into a lab yet keeping the humanity and warmth of craft, he devises new species of clothing: sartorial breeds stemming from the seamless morphing of opposite worlds.
This season Zegna challenges technique and image even more. The silhouettes are capacious and airy, the mix of elements bold and personal. Shirts and jackets collide in hybrid forms, with an oversize fit, experimental collars and playful double sleeves. Bombers and anoraks are matched with tailored high-waisted double pleat trousers, completely rewriting the template of the suit. Parkas both long and short gain the airiness of a shirt. Degradè checks and souvenir prints add rhythm, while perforation and meshes provide an even airier feel of immateriality. Knitwear is a building block for inventive layering. In keeping with the morphing of categories, sneakers and sandals marry opanka constructions with the technical details and meshes of sport style, all of it on bold soles.
The juxtaposition and addition of elements is enhanced by the color palette which places side by side shades and nuances in variations of intensity. The amalgamation of pale blue, Tropea pink, bow green, desert, sunflower yellow, mocha, nautical blue and loganberry red is painterly and individual.
Fabrics merge the technical with the refined: Century Cashmere with a waterproof membrane; textured Tussah silk produced by Lanificio Zegna using yarns obtained from wild, natural sources; blends of silk and cotton, cotton-linen satin, tumbled wool, perforated or embossed baby-calf, mesh.
“Creation for me always stems from a technical challenge. I am presenting shapes that are bold and voluminous, yet very light, in layers of meshes, wools, silks.” says Zegna artistic director Alessandro Sartori “I found the same challenge in the architecture of this space. It is the perfect place to unleash the Zegna crew of individuals who recognize themselves in the XXX logo, which runs from the clothes to the set-up, unifying the message: a symbol of couture craft that is also the most personal and unexpected expression of Zegna”.
Thu, June 28 2018 » Fashion Blog
Sat, January 14 2017 » Fashion Blog
Crafted Modernity: A “Made To Measure” Fashion Show
A merging of the intensely artisanal and the resolutely contemporary. Alessandro Sartori debuts in the role of Artistic Director for Ermenegildo Zegna in a dialogue between the art of exquisite tailoring and the fast-paced needs of the contemporary urban and globe trotter. Out of progressive contrasts – technology clashes with tradition as the outdoors spirit stems from sartorial constructions and sportswear permanently alters the look of formality – new categories arise. The message is synchronic: ease, speed, luxury that’s relevant for the moment and that’s thought to be lived out there. The spirit is as multi-cultural, multi-age, multiple as contemporary masculinity is.
The show is set within the iconic premises of Anselm Kiefer’s The Seven Heavenly Palaces. His brutally poetic, conceptually expansive architectures of pure raw materials and effortless engineering becomes the perfect environment for Alessandro Sartori’s new aesthetic which evolves and breaks codes relying on intense textures and keen constructions that define new functions. Casentino felt is made with ultralight cashmere, allowing suits to turn into outerwear. The textile research of Ermenegildo Zegna is manifested in the exclusive Trofeo Cashmere denim as well as in felted cashmere jersey and tubular padded jacquards. A special wax tanning process gives baby calf a papery, waterproof feel and a surprising weightlessness. Geometrics jacquard – hand-drawn and intricate – add a spin to classic suiting patterns.
The silhouette is soft and active, defined by the strong line of the shoulders and a natural flow. Inside-out constructions bring functionality to the fore; drawstrings mold the shape of formal coats and field jackets. The proportions of blousons and parkas have a defining lightness. Rubberized zippers close tailored outerwear. In the global shifting, an elegant informality arises.
The organic color palette grows from tones of winter white and light grey to notes of camel, vicuna, rusted nail and African earth to deepen into shades of oxblood, pond, peacock green and journal blue.
Accessories make a bold presence: active sneakers, sturdy brogues with silicon-dipped soles, outsized portfolios and backpacks, book briefcases. A special loom turns super thin leather strips into a woven fabric: the innovative Pelle Tessuta.
To close the circle creating a real dialogue with the customers, in the spirit of Couture the day after the show a selection of looks will be available to order Made to Measure in global stores worldwide, scheduled for a six-weeks delivery according to the meticulous atelier timeline. This unique experience expands the reach of the show to a global audience, keeping the authenticity of Zegna values in soulful pieces meant to be really worn.
Sat, January 14 2017 » Fashion Blog