There had been rumors that Schiaparelli’s owner, Italian luxury baron Diego Della Valle might be mulling a sale, now that its couturier Daniel Roseberry has made it into one of the hottest labels in Paris. The presence of two major LVMH executives, the current and future president of the conglomerate’s Fashion Group – which oversees Celine, Fendi, Pucci and Givenchy, among others – Sidney Toledano and Michael Burke, will only add fuel to the speculation.
Asked about a possible bid, Burke replied: “Diego and I are old friends, and neighbors in Miami.” While Toledano responded, “we are just here to see a great show by a very interesting designer.”
Sporting a tan from spending his winter break at his canal side villa in Miami, Della Valle shrugged and smiled: “No, we are very happy owning Schiaparelli.”
Certainly, judging from this show, it would be a smart acquisition for LVMH, and Bernard Arnault who collects brands the way kids collect Pokémon cards. Given the quality of this remarkable show, the attractions of Schiaparelli to LVMH and Della Valle – who also happens to be board member of the French luxury giant – are multiple and manifold.
Roseberry has created a great couture division and won a legion of wealthy fans. Couture collector Mouna Al Ayoub sat front row, as did blond beauty Hunter Schafer.
Roseberry taking the house’s surrealist DNA to new levels – with a robot baby that looked uncannily alive, carried by a lithe mum in a pearly silk column; or the cyber gal in a cocktail that looked like it was a magnet which had attracted calculators, silicon chips, keypad transistors after walking into an electronics store. Albeit that the shape was a regal dress worthy of a futuristic Elizabeth Regina.
Roseberry broke new ground with materials – like the divine opening chess piece cocktail in vinyl, with a white crochet collar – and references. Like a power-heroine cow gal in a blouson made of scores of Western belts.
A truly outstanding couture collection, whose highlights include a “creature” dress of embellished nude petal embroidery with a keyhole slit at the front; or a stupendous bird of paradise lace cocktail whose wings soared upwards.
But the very surrealism of his designs and their complicated construction have made it difficult to build a true ready-to-wear division. To date, Schiaparelli has only five boutiques internationally – including Bergdorf Goodman and Harrods. LVMH’s sheer power in product extension, marketing, distribution and global know how would make it an ideal home for Schiaparelli, one of the most legendary names in fashion, since it was founded in Paris back in 1927 by Rome-born Elsa Schiaparelli.
As one well-informed observer noted, using the French concept of terroir, the unique land, soil and climate needed to create great wines. “The plant Schiaparelli is very healthy; it just needs the right terroir.”
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