Brazilian Flavor: Raquel Diniz was celebrating an important next step for her brand of femininity and romance during Milan Fashion Week, with a little help from friends including Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
Coinciding with her spring 2023 presentation, she officially opened the door of her first 750-square-foot boutique on central Via Santo Spirito replacing a former unit of furrier Simonetta Ravizza.
“Milan is where it all started, in my living room, and for the past five seasons it has been my brand’s home,” she said fly-kissing her clientele, already cramming the space.
Developed by architectural firm Chahan, the space pays homage to Diniz’s Brazilian roots with stone flooring bearing motifs reminiscent of sandy beaches in Ipanema.
A mix of organic materials such as walnut wood used for displays, stone panels and furniture with concrete walls contributed to the sophisticated decor, against which her joyful concoctions for fall were in full display.
“I wanted the store to have some kind of Brazilian imprint, but also a touch of Made in Italy,” the designer said. “One of the reasons I came here is because I wanted to be part of this country’s culture,” she said.
Diniz, who is married to fashion investor and Formula 1 mogul Lawrence Stroll, came to Milan to study at Istituto Marangoni, before going to work for public relations maven Noona Smith-Petersen.
She feels Milan was the natural first retail stop for the brand but she’s already planning to secure a location in Brazil, potentially in Bahia where she often vacations and owns a house.
Business is doing great, she offered, in spite of the pandemic quagmire, after securing deals with marquee independent retailers such as Milan’s Antonia and e-commerce power players, including Matchesfashion.
Diniz’s foray into America was curtailed when Barney’s folded, as the brand had signed an exclusive deal with the retailer.
This week, she is meeting with Bergdorf Goodman and Saks, but has already secured distribution via Intermix in the U.S.
The spring collection hinged on a painterly palette inspired by Henri Matisse and his mastery in color assemblage. Diniz offers resortwear for summer gateways with boat dinner-filled agendas. Flowing cape-like gowns had a dégradé effect veering from yellow and peachy orange to fuchsia, while plissè numbers fitting on the torso had revealing cutouts, befitting for beach days as much as party nights.
The designer also expanded her daywear offering, adding cotton frocks bearing irregular geometric motifs and leave prints and complemented the look via a new iterations of the Raquel Diniz x Aquazzura footwear capsule.
She topped her busy day with a cocktail reception and dinner on the terrace of the Museo Poldi Pezzoli, attended by A-listers, which also included Alessandra Ambrosio, Jourdan Dunn, Margherita Missoni and Coco Brandolini. — Martino Carrera
Prada’s Pals: Prada had quite the front row, with designers including Pierpaolo Piccioli, Christopher Kane and Pieter Mulier supporting Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons.
The front row included the likes of Michaela Coel, Hunter Schafer and Storm Reid, who said she was busy with her production company, A Seed & Wings, set up with her mother Robyn Simpson. “I am also very excited because I will start filming a new movie that has not been announced yet in the South of France. I like to go to a new place, a new environment and work with new people,” said Reid, twirling in her metallic Prada slipdress. “I feel like a disco ball, I feel so amazing, Prada never disappoints,” she said.
“Euphoria” has just been signed up for another season and, asked if she expected this kind of success, Schaefer said “it’s hard to anticipate every time we come up with something new, but I am thankful of how it was received and so proud of the Emmys it won,” referring to the recent 25 nominations and awards. — Luisa Zargani
Georgia’s Moves: Georgia May Jagger has signed with The Lions, WWD has learned exclusively.
The 30-year-old British-American model was previously represented by CAA Fashion.
Jagger made her runway debut when she closed Chanel’s resort 2011 show with a bang — on a motorcycle — as envisioned by Karl Lagerfeld.
Thrusted into the limelight at a young age, as the daughter of Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall, she had already been featured in a magazine spread by that point, first appearing in British Vogue in late 2008.
She’s since walked for the likes of Tom Ford, Balmain, Versace, Louis Vuitton and Marc Jacobs. She’s been the face of Hudson Jeans, Rimmel, Thierry Mugler, and has collaborated on capsule collections with Volcom and Mulberry. She’s graced covers of various Vogue issues, Harper’s Bazaar, Elle and i-D.
“The one constant with the fashion industry is its vigorous movement of trends and then by proxy people, but when someone is a true disrupter, they’re able to carve a poignant and permanent place for themselves no matter what the current scene is,” Jen Ramey, senior vice president of The Lions, said in a statement. “That is what I have always admired about Georgia, and her impressive repertoire of work echoes that. While her career as of now profoundly speaks for itself, I am very excited for her next chapter, and the heights we’ll reach together with her at The Lions.”
Outside modeling, Jagger is known as co-owner of Bleach London, the British hair salon opened in 2011. It expanded to Los Angeles last year.
At The Lions, founded in 2014, Jagger joins a roster of clients that includes models Candice Swanepoel, Stella Maxwell, Eva Herzigova, Valentina Sampaio and, most recently, Kristen McMenamy. — Ryma Chikhoune
Stella x Sadie: Stella McCartney is ready to release an all-American winter 2022 campaign, featuring “Stranger Things” actress Sadie Sink, and photographed by Theo Wenner in a new art exhibition space in Montauk, New York.
Wenner photographed Sink at The Ranch and other outdoor locations in Montauk, and against the backdrop of abstract Frank Stella sculptures.
Stella’s art was the main inspiration for McCartney’s fall 2022 show, which unfurled on the top floor of the Centre Pompidou last March.
“His minimalism and maximalism are parallel to our brand. The more masculine side and the more explosive side tracks well,” McCartney said at the time. For fall, she translated the artist’s riotous collages into allover printed jersey pieces and suits, and his bold straight angle and diagonal stripes onto assertive chalk stripe tailoring, faux fur power coats, and graphic knits.
Ahead of the show, Stella also touted his fashion and design connections and said they helped him to become an artist. The 86-year-old said his mother had studied fashion and design in school in Boston, and always had art projects on the go at home.
“We used to paint on one of my bedroom windows looking up Main Street. So it was a turkey in November, Santa Claus a few days later and winding down with Mother Rabbit on Easter,” Stella said.
“I might have ended up as a happy representational painter tutored by his mother if it hadn’t been for the venetian blinds that fell open and allowed the trackless trolley headlights to bury our turkey in stripes,” he added.
Without those trolley lights transforming the turkey, America’s midcentury art scene would not have been the same. — Samantha Conti
Scaling Responsibly: Lynette Ong, founder of the sustainable jewelry brand Edge of Ember, started her company in 2014, after taking a break from being a financial bond trader in New York and Hong Kong.
The idea to start a label came to Ong when she was still on the trading floor dealing with numbers. “I wanted to find quality jewelry that didn’t cost an arm and a leg, and I wanted to know that it was made in an ethical way with sustainable materials,” she said, explaining that she also wanted an upgrade from mass-produced costume jewelry, but couldn’t quite find anything in the market.
So, she started Edge of Ember, which came to international fame after Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, wore a piece from the brand on her final days in the U.K. before relocating abroad with her husband Prince Harry in 2020.
As Ong expands the brand, she’s been collaborating with fashion blogger Victoria Magrath, who has 1.3 million followers on Instagram.
“I’ve known Victoria for years, and did our first collaboration over Zoom during lockdown,” said Ong, adding that it’s been such a success that they were both compelled to continue working together.
Their third series, “Gaia” takes inspiration from nature — the collection features green malachite and iridescent mother-of-pearl stones set against gold and silver.
Ong and Magrath worked with one of the brand’s suppliers in Thailand that are RJC certified. All the metals used are recycled and sourced from a local refinery. with each order placed sponsoring the planting of 10 mangrove trees in partnership with the Eden Reforestation Project.
“I was inspired by the model of Warby Parker and Toms where social responsibility is at the core of their business and I wanted to create a profitable and scalable brand that has social responsibility at the heart of it,” Ong said.
“It was also important for me to work with craftsmen in Asia because of my heritage.”
Edge of Ember remains focused on the U.K., even with a third of their sales coming from international destinations and the U.S. being one of their key markets.
Ong is planning numerous collaborations for the next year to grow her audience.
“We are a digital first brand, but going forward we will be looking to do more physical activations and partnering with wholesale stores,” she said. — Hikmat Mohammed
Sustainable Shopping: The Conservatory, founded by Brian Bolke, will officially open its fourth outpost Friday in Houston’s River Oaks District, a 3,300-square-foot natural light-filled space in the outdoor shopping destination.
The brand debuted in March 2019 with a gallery in New York’s Hudson Yards and also has an outpost at Dallas’ Highland Park Village and The Conservatory on Two in Highland Park Village. Its Napa Valley, California, pop-up store closed last December, as planned.
The Conservatory’s Houston store and its website, Theconservatorynyc.com, features more than 175 brands and 2,000 products. Categories include women’s and men’s clothing and accessories, jewelry, well-being (beauty and treatment, bath and body, and candles and fragrances), as well as living (decor and objects, books and paper, and gifts).
“We are bringing new brands, many with a focus on sustainability and unexpected edits to Houston — a discerning city where we are looking forward to becoming a part of the community,” Bolke said.
In 2014, Bolke sold Forty Five Ten, the Dallas, Texas-based specialty store he cofounded in 2000 to Headington Cos., and stayed on as president until August 2017. He then launched an independent consultancy, and spent the next months months formulating his concept for The Conservatory.
Built on what it calls “considered luxury,” key labels include Gabriela Hearst, Maison Margiela and Courreges, all exclusive to Houston, as well as Mugler, Lapointe, Philosophy, Michael Kors Collection, and Brandon Maxwell. In accessories and jewelry, featured brands are Metier, Paul Andrew, Neous, Sidney Garber, Mallary Marks, Tabayer, Shihara and Lisa Eisner. Men’s brands will include Maison Margiela, NN07, Aspesi and Ron Dorff. Living brands will include Georg Jensen, Saved Cashmere, and Phaidon Books, while well-being includes Perfumer H, DS and Durga, The Harmonist, Costa Brazil, Susanne Kaufmann and Frama.
The one-level shop features custom American walnut furniture and a matte black metal leopard carpet. Black velvet upholstered deco chairs are mixed with vintage Frank Gehry chairs from the ’80s. Custom curtains have The Conservatory logo.
The opening will feature an art exhibition, including a large-format abstract painting by Dallas artist William Atkinson, courtesy of the Erin Cluley Gallery. — Lisa Lockwood