Brognano confirms talent with an airy collection combining sportswear and glamour
A year after his runway debut in Milan, Nicola Brognano returned to the catwalk on Thursday with a third show that was equal measures chic and laid-back, striking the right balance between wearable little sportswear-inspired pieces and couture silhouettes. The 27-year-old designer, who launched his women's ready-to-wear label in Spring 2015, has built on his promising beginnings with a collection for Spring/Summer 2019 created to appeal to the widest possible audience, offering a truly democratic version of couture.
Little dresses embroidered with yellow daisies and outfits pairing crop tops with knee-length pencil skirts featuring romantic floral prints in shades of wisteria, sky blue and egg-yolk yellow, shared the catwalk with enormous tulle ruffs that enveloped the tops of evening gowns like cocoons. All of this rubbed shoulders with sportier everyday pieces, such as tight cycling tops and pants, swimsuits with white zippers, undershirts, surf suits and nylon trench anoraks.
In this way, the designer playfully juxtaposed two contrasting styles, with glamorous tulle gloves bringing a chic touch to some looks, while tops, dresses and trousers in transparent yellow plastic cut through the drama of selected couture silhouettes.
"This season, I imagined a Californian surfer girl on holiday in the south of Italy. There are intense yellows like the sun and some very couture clothes with references to the world of sport, as well as a masculine element," explained the Calabrian-born, Milan-based designer backstage, with a smile that was perhaps all the wider for having secured an investor for the brand.
Just 10 days ago, the designer and his business partner Stefano Toselli sold 35% of co-founded Brognano parent company Dicia 7 to Manifattura Paolini, a 30-year-old apparel manufacturing company based in Appignano, in the Italian region of Marche. The manufacturer, which often invests in emerging talents, supported Massimo Giorgetti from the beginning and now holds a majority stake in his MSGM label, as well as in other brands such as Manuel Ritz, Montecore and Paolini.
"This deal is very important for me because it will allow me to express myself fully creatively, while maintaining competitive prices. Brognano is positioned as a contemporary brand. That 30-metre-long tulle dress, for example, is sold in stores for 940 euros," said the designer, indicating a mist-like sky-blue dress with spaghetti straps.
At the same time, another company – Fashion Container – has been founded to manage the brand's manufacturing and product development. 51% of the new entity's capital is held by Manifattura Paolini, while Nicola Brognano and Stefano Toselli own the rest. The label has therefore switched manufacturers but is still distributed through the Riccardo Grassi showroom.
"We're very happy. This last year, we put serious work into the brand's identity, creating foundations with different partners to consolidate the label and help it grow. Today we're distributed through 75 multi-brand stores, including Le Bon Marché in Paris," Stefano Toselli told FashionNetwork.com.
"The house's image is characterised by the kind of woman who is always feminine and has a certain softness. At the same time, Nicola Brognano always takes the market into consideration, without exaggerating in terms of the price," he concluded.
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