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Articles on Missoni

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If you think that the rainbow is only limited to seven colors, Missoni is bound to prove you wrong. Impressing fashion expert Diana Vreeland back in the 1970s, the brand created such an impact that prompted her to make that remark, and soon influencing how the United States and the rest of the world embraced the colorful creations of Missoni.

A family affair

Missoni is as much a child of Ottavio and Rosita Missoni as their actual offspring Vittorio, Luca and Angela, who eventually held important places within the organization.

Right in the country considered by many to be the most fashionable, the couple started a fashion business, initially focusing on knitwear, in 1953. The family brand already garnered attention for its innovative approach to knitwear, so when the Ottavio and Rosita decided to start raising a family, their three children grew up with their parents working tirelessly and eventually familiarized themselves with the business.

By 1996, many decades after the brand became an established high end one, the elder Missonis gave way for their children to take over. Vittorio was the marketing director and CEO until his untimely death, Luca was in charge of menswear until 2008, and Angela is now the company’s creative director. Angela’s daughter Margherita took on the talents of her family and established her own line after briefly working for Missoni.

The signatures and the trends

There was no pause in the work of the couple even right after they married. Ottavio and Rosita created tracksuits out of knitwear and added zippers on the leg. It was more for Ottavio’s convenience actually, as Rosita said that her husband wasn’t so thrilled about removing shoes when he has to put pants on. Not much later, their signature zigzag motif came to life upon using the Raschel knitting machine.

Missoni is notable too for an idea that was too controversial when the brand was just beginning. In 1967, when Missoni made its debut on the runway, Rosita noticed that the white undergarments got in the way of their creations, so she asked the models to take at least their brassieres off. What they did not anticipate was how the light would reveal more than what they were initially seeing. The crowd felt scandalized, and Missoni was asked not to return after the bra-less incident. But the “bra-less flawless” caught on, with Yves Saint Laurent getting onto it the following season.

Missoni lives on today

The zigzag motif and the multicolored stripes and waves that came to be identified with the brand may have undergone transformations through the years, but the brand stuck with them. Doing what they do best, they still combine geometric shapes and abstract patterns to come out with vibrant creations.

On its 65th anniversary, the brand is “Missoni All Over” and quite literally, with the Italian label confidently branding their collection. From their footwear, clothing and accessories, the recognizable logo will be prominent. Angela Missoni also commissioned models Kendall Jenner and Filip Roseen to be the faces for the collection, shot by British fashion photographer Harley Weir in the desert, with the clothing creating a vibrant contrast against the empty background.

Missoni Milan RTW Spring Summer 2017
Missoni Milan RTW Spring Summer 2017

For the brand’s Woman Fall 2018 collection, the ready to wear are full of loose-fitting silhouettes that still bring out the glam and the sensual out of the female form. It seems to revisit the designs of yesteryears, with its herringbone patterns and trenches, ponchos and capes. Different fabrics are used as contrast to the knits. The creations are full of fringed hems and intarsia stripes, enforcing a boho-chic appeal.

Missoni Man Fall 2018 collection

As for the Man Fall 2018 collection, it is inspired by also another take at the past, this time of 80s New York. The creations remind us of Missoni’s penchant for fusing together, and quite boldly, different textures and patterns, which was an apt representation of the dizzying decade. The impression that it gives is that the collection would be worn by those who have this divide within themselves, too, the urbanite and the nonconformist in one.

Since Missoni came to existence, it has significantly influenced how the world now has perceived knitwear. It has further solidified the Italians’ place in fashion, that not only consisted of its work in leather but also in other fabrics. The Missoni creations not only changed the way the rainbow can be seen but also the fashion world that has grown to love its colorful aesthetics.

Missoni boutique in Milan, Italy.
Missoni boutique in Milan, Italy. Credit: pcruciatti / Shutterstock.com

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