At Saks Fifth Avenue, one of the most important hubs for Italian fashion in the US, ITC introduced the American public to four new Italian stylists.
i-Italy attended the event which was part of a series of initiatives promoted by ITC and the Italian National Chamber of Fashion. Albino, Aquilano Rimondi, Chicca Lualdi BeeQueen, and Marco De Vincenzo presented their garments on mannequins-like models, laid motionless on couches and armchairs.
Italian and American celebrities gathered together in this at times surreal atmosphere to discuss fashion trends and these new all-Italian creations.Among them was Consul General Francesco Maria Talò who, as usual, took the opportunity to speak words of great appreciation for the initiative. Specialized press, traders and important Saks Fifth Avenue clients had a unique opportunity to discover these brands, still relatively foreign to the American market.
Aniello Musella, director of ITC–North America, gave us important details: “This initiative focuses on one of the most important departments of “Made in Italy”: garments, a crucial market especially now that there is a glimmer of recovery for the Italian and American economies.
ITC made of this a consumer oriented operation as well. This is why we chose a location as prestigious as Saks Fifth Avenue. With these four emerging designers, our goal is to bring to the US new names of the Italian fashion. I say “emerging” and not “new” because they are already well known in Italy and have taken part in shows all over Europe, but they are still not so mainstream in the United States. Our goal, together with our partners at the Italian Chamber of Fashion, is to support these new faces in the States.”
Musella added these comments about the always-delicate matter of event communication:
“We did consumer publicity: we had a very successful ad in the Style section of the New York Times. Furthermore we used many more specialized media, such as Women Wears Daily (WWD) and various fashion blogs.
In addition to that, we had a mailing campaign aimed at Saks Fifth Avenue clients. Clearly this is one of the benefits of our partnership. Saks Fifth Avenue has been very supportive of us with this mailing activity, and also the Save Venice foundation joined in this effort and brought many important clients.”
Let’s talk about the union of fashion and design. Models next to the best of Italian design…
“This is a way of making joint promotion of fashion and some examples of Made in Italy furnishing, of putting together two important departments of Made in Italy. The focus today is obviously on fashion, but we wanted to leave some space also to the furniture sector and somehow advertise another important initiative, organized by Saloni Milano, that will take place in December in twenty stores in SoHo.
You suggested it is important to support emerging stylists. Italian fashion cannot live only off of old glories…
“We need to support the traditional names, the famous brands that are definitely important for the Italian economy and image. At the same time, however, we need to bring new entries to the United States, and we can do that if we operate systematically and foresightedly.
The Americans are doing the same and are doing it very well. There is great support here, now, to the domestic fashion compartment, especially towards young, fresh names.
New York fashion week is getting more and more important, even though I think it still is far away from Milan’s and Paris’. In any case there is strong competition here and we need to bring the new Italian talents to this arena, and this responsibility rests also in the public sector’s hands.
However it is important to say that we cannot simply bring to the States young new designers who just graduated from the best design schools we have, no matter how gifted they are. We need to import professionals who already have had working experience, whose name has already been present on the European runways. This is a very sophisticated market, and when a new designer is introduced to companies such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Neimen Marcus or Bergdorf Goodman, they expect him or her to already have a certain allure at least for oversea buyers, and, more in general, to be already an esteemed professional in his field.