Located at 223 Viale Sarca in Milan, in the headquarters of the textile and clothing associations. Its subject is predominantly the “fashion system.” Monographs, technical reviews, periodicals, designers’ catalogues, books on costume’s exhibitions, press reviews, videos, graduation theses, and illustrated materials (about 100,000 photos and slides, of which 30,000 come from the archive of the photographer Elsa Haertter) are available for consultation by all and sundry. Documentation is divided in three sections: technology, economy and marketing, fashion and costume. The library is directed by Fiammetta Roditi and counts among its founding associates the Italian Textile Association, Sistema Moda Italia, and the National Chamber of Fashion.
Patrice Félix (1960). French photographer of Congolese descent. At a very young age he left his family to move to London where he entered the world of fashion. His work is marked by his ironic view and his skill at conferring allure and mystery on even the most ordinary clothing.
New York prêt-à-porter label, founded by Bryan Bradley, a former fashion designer for Calvin Klein, and Josh Partner, fashion journalist. The first Collection was presented to the press in 1997 and received glowing reviews. Young movie stars of Hollywood, from Cameron Diaz to Jennifer Lopez, adored the vintage and retro style created by these two fashion designers, both originally from the Midwest. The real success arrived in June of 1999 with the awarding of the Perry Ellis prize, assigned each year by the Council of Fashion Designers of America to the best new fashion designers of womenswear lines. “Behind the creation of each Collection,” say Bradley and Partner, “there is always a single, unique idea: forcing women to dress more carefully and to undress more slowly.”
Pauline (1912). French dressmaker. More than a designer of women’s outfits, she was a true craftswoman. She was born in Paris, moved to New York in 1937, after completing her studies and working in her father’s dressmaking boutique and in Armand’s dressmaking boutique. In the United States, she worked for Ben Gersel, Travis Banton and the Hattie Carnegie Fashion House. She founded the House of Trigère in 1942. She was famous for her little outfits with slim silhouettes, skirt just down to the knee. She was also renowned for her choice of fabrics, which she always merged into a singular, pioneering mix, and for her outfits in tulle with appliqués of embroidered flowers.
Vivianna (1927). Swedish jewelry artist, who worked especially in silver. One of her “pieces,” Assymetrical Necklace, 1959, has been called “a milestone in modern jewelry” (Barbara Cartlidge in Twentieth Century Jewellery). In 1948 she opened her first workshop in MalmÖ. She traveled. In Paris, she became a friend of Picasso, Braque and Brancusi. She was very beautiful and was photographed by such renowned photographers as Gilles Ehrmann. Among her best known creations, a double-vortex brooch and bracelet-wristwatch for a show that she held at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. She lives in Jakarta, in Indonesia.
Rita (1913). Italian fur designer. She was born in Asti. Responding to an early ambition, as soon as she finished an exclusive course in dressmaking, she moved on to Milan where she continued her apprenticeship in a strict school for future furriers. Her first items, made in a small Turinese workshop, were greeted in the years following WWII with an unexpected popularity because of their impeccable cut and rigorous execution. Within a few years Togno had become a well-known name, alongside names like Tivioli, Viscardi and Naldoni. They were responsible for the importance that Turin won in the furrier trade. She collaborated, with high fashion items, on the Roman runway presentations of Mila Schön and Irene Galitzine, thus increased her reputation even further with the novelty of her creations: colored, intarsiaed furs, reversible in other futs or fabrics, sculpted, transparent breitschwanz shawls and geometrically intarsiaed chincilla, dazzling in its elegance.
Group of British photographers composed of Nyholm, Lincoln and Phillips. They worked for advertising and fashion in the 1930s. Their pictures are warm in tone and elegant.
Scottish company, specializing in the cashmere yarns sector. It belongs to the Dawson International Group and has offices in Kinross in Scotland. It employs 350 person. Since June 2003, the director for all markets, except the United Kingdom, with the title of sales director, is the Italian Stefano Finotti, who previously worked at an Italian spinning mill.
Yamai (1964). Japanese designer. He has always worked with his wife Yoriko, and in fact the couple is in sharp contrast with the cliché of the traditional Japanese couple. He graduated from the Bunka Fukuso fashion school, and worked for other maisons such as Bigi Co. Ltd, Tokyo Kumagai and in particular for the Japanese fashion designer Zucca. The year was 1995 when he launched his first prêt-à-porter collection based on the concepts of lightness and freshness in the selection of fabrics. He offered for everyday wear easy outfits, made principally out of silk, cotton poplin, knitwear, and linen.
A French word that is practically untranslatable, also known as faux cul. It is an elastic bulge, form or bustle, to be worn under a skirt. Very fashionable at the end of the nineteenth century, when the volume of the fabric was entirely gathered in the back, to form an exaggeratedly arched silhouette. It reappeared sporadically throughout the entire twentieth century, especially for evening wear. In the 1940s Balenciaga used the tournure, and at the end of the 1980s, Chanel, Balmain and Lacroix rediscovered it. For the 1993-94 season, it was used by Yohji Yamamoto and Vivienne Westwood.