Trade Show

‘Mini Me’ and Vibrant Tones: The Biggest Children’s Wear Trends at Pitti Bimbo

‘Mini Me’ and Vibrant Tones: The Biggest Children’s Wear Trends at Pitti Bimbo

Happening for the first time in conjunction with Pitti Uomo, the Pitti Bimbo children’s wear trade show is making a comeback from June 30 to July 2 with a revisited physical format. Instead of the usual 500-plus exhibitors, the fair will showcase the collections of 113 brands, 42 of them available exclusively online at this season’s Pitti Connect.
“This is going to be a kind of peculiar season, but we definitely wanted to be there. I think it was important to show the resilience of the sector and collaborate all together,” said Massimiliano Ferrari, cofounder and creative director of leading Italian swimwear company MC2 Saint Barth, which will showcase at the fair the collections of both its adult and children’s lines. “Since the beginning of our adventure, Pitti has helped us so much. It has been such a great supporter of emerging brands that we are so happy to contribute to its restart after the pandemic.”

MC2 Saint Barth operates 40 stores around the world, located in prestigious holiday destinations, spanning from the Caribbean island of St. Barth, which inspired the launch of the brand, Miami and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic to Mykonos, Ibiza and Capri, among others.
“For our company, the children’s wear division is the one that was less impacted by the COVID-19 crisis,” Ferrari said. “First of all, kids grow fast and they constantly need new garments. Second thing, schools have been closed for long and many children spent more time at the beach with their families.”

In addition, Ferrari highlighted that children’s wear stores didn’t have to face the lockdown imposed on other retail categories.

MC2 Saint Barth Spring 2022 
Courtesy of MC2 Saint Barth

However, according to data provided by Confindustria Moda, the association that groups more than 65,000 companies operating in the fashion sector, in 2020 sales of Italian children’s wear were down 14.7 percent to 2.6 billion euros, compared to the previous year. If exports dropped 13.7 percent, the domestic sell-out registered a 18.1 percent decrease. As happened across the whole industry, the online sales of the segment spiked 33.1 percent, a growth led by the newborn compartment, where online sales were up 97.3 percent compared to the previous year.
The newborn segment of the children’s wear industry is also driving the sector’s relaunch. In the first three months of 2021, exports of newborn garments and accessories returned to growth. The most encouraging signals come from the United Arab Emirates, where Italian exports of baby clothes increased 115.7 percent compared to the same period last year. Positive results were also registered in France, where exports grew almost 50 percent, as well as in Switzerland and German, where the growth rate was around 10 percent.
Fashion-wise, the collections presented at Pitti Bimbo will put the focus on a renewed desire for freedom, joy and a mix of style and practicality.
As Ferrari highlighted, vibrant colors will take center stage in the collections. “I think neon tones are making a strong comeback,” he said, adding that the “mini me” trend continues to rule the children’s wear industry.
As well as MC2 Saint Barth, Herno and Invicta will also present their kid’s wear collections, along with the adults’ range.

Herno Kids Spring 2022 
Courtesy of Herno

Bright tones will steal the spotlight in the Herno Kids range, which will present a reedition of its signature Igloo lightweight bomber jacket in a selection of neon colors, including lime green, hot pink and orange.
While MC2 Saint Barth will continue to propose its signature sweaters featuring intarsia of the name of the most popular holiday destinations, both Herno and Invicta will showcase sweatshirts, T-shirts and polo shirts embellished with logos in bright tones.
For those buyers who won’t be able to physically attend the trade show, Pitti Bimbo will host a series of digital initiatives. For example, live guided virtual tours of the fairs will be offered for both Korean and Japanese retailers, while the Pitti Bimbo social media accounts will offer an exclusive showcase of some of the key items included in the collections available at the fair. In fact, fashion designer and multifaceted creative Alessandro Enriquez will dress some of the most popular cartoons, including Barbie and Ken, but also Popeye, with the creations of the brands at the trade show. The digital content will be released throughout Pitti Bimbo.

WSM Continues to Be Hotbed for Young, Sustainable Brands

WSM Continues to Be Hotbed for Young, Sustainable Brands

MILAN — The entirely digital experience forced by the pandemic was a thing of the past for White Milano’s most recent WSM format, dedicated to sustainability and held in conjunction with Milan Men’s Fashion Week.
While the trade show organizer is looking forward to September when it plans to stage a physical show for what its founder Massimiliano Bizzi has long described as the renaissance of Milan and its return at the forefront of the international fashion map, the most recent WSM edition held from June 19 to 21 saw some 50 brands showcasing their new collections in a “phy-gital” format, with key physical activations spread across Milan.
Almost like a collective pushing the boundaries of what sustainability and artisanship really mean in fashion, many of them were returning exhibitors that are not only showing commitment to the trade show season after season but also supporting one another.

Committed to expanding its local and international footprint, as reported, White Milano set up an hybrid format for WSM, aided by the easing of restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19, which included mounting a temporary exhibition space at the Fondazione Sozzani Tazzoli Milano where it showcased a streamlined group of 10 brands selected with the support the Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana. White Milano has also pledged a donation to the fashion governing body’s Fashion Trust initiative with which it shares the same goal of supporting young talents and small and medium-sized fashion enterprises.

To be sure, Bizzi has always been vocal about the need for industry operators to join forces in supporting the post-pandemic relaunch on Milan. To this end, the trade show also conscripted edgy Milan retailers from Daad to Modes and Biffi to Civiconove to each display a brand from the WSM selection, in a bid to shorten the gap between emerging brands and their potential customer base. It also forged ties with New York concept store The Canvas, based on a profit-sharing business model, bringing some of the brands the store promote to Italy.

The Civiconove store displaying products from Ecoalf, an exhibitor at the WSM trade show. 
Courtesy of White Milano.

The Sozzani Tazzoli Milano foundation was also home to a range of workshops and talks spanning from the sustainable transformation of the textile supply chain to denim supplier Candiani presenting its biodegradable Coreva fabric.
What sets WSM exhibitors apart is their commitment to sustainable and local production — in Italy or in the countries where each brand is based — and an overall purpose-driven business model that is sure to intercept the values of Gen Z consumers.
Here, WWD picked the four most interesting fashion brands on show at WSM.
GENTILE MILANO: A retro-tinged, ‘70s mood ran through the Gentile Milano spring collection — a redux of flamboyant Milanese garb crafted from deadstock fabrics sourced from Apulia and Milan-based factories or vintage clothing retrieved from thrift stores and markets.
The brand’s founder, Gioacchino Gentile, launched the brand in 2020 with a seasonless and genderless approach, aiming to offer his customers almost one-of-a-kind pieces. After moving to Milan to study design at fashion university Naba, Gentile said he “started scrutinizing the fashion system and developing my own ethic principles,” which led him to reject overproduction and a general fixation in the industry for a single stereotyped body shape.

Gentile Milano Spring 2022 seen at WSM. 
Courtesy of White Milano

The collection featured feminine, delicate brocade single-breasted suits and boxy double-breasted versions paired with shorts for men, as well as see-through slipdresses hemmed with flamboyant ruffles for ladies who are excited to party once again.
ZEROBARRACENTO: Sustainable fashion press officer Camilla Carrara launched Zerobarracento in 2017 and she has been expanding its scope ever since, while continuing to bank on its core outerwear category — filled with roomy, belted and off-shouldered styles.
Like other brands on show at WSM, Carrara’s mission is to “reshape the values of the fashion industry, abandoning the season cycles and the gender- or age-based approach to clothing,” she said. Manufactured following the zero waste, puzzle-like paper pattern principle, which allows to save at least 15 percent of textiles compared to traditional processes, Carrera said she is often the one introducing the laboratories and factories she works with to the eco-friendly technique.

Zerobarracento Spring 2022 seen at WSM. 
Courtesy of White Milano

In 2020, she launched her own e-commerce site, receiving support from the Worth program established by the European Commission to help innovative SMEs thrive.
SARA VALENTE: Aiming to tap into the evolving needs of female customers always on the go, Sara Valente established her namesake handbag brand in 2010, developing clean and minimalistic styles relying on Made in Italy sourcing and manufacturing.
At WSM, she introduced a collection designed while she was pregnant, which inspired her to stress that approach even further, as seen on the “Papira” style that features pockets that can be rolled up and down to allow for more space. The designer stressed her “slow-fashion” bent, noting that each bag is carefully handcrafted by a single artisan, giving the items a one-of-a-kind feel.
MARCELLO PIPITONE: A IED graduate, Marcello Pipitone aims to imbue his upbringing and personal story in the namesake brand he founded in 2020. Filled with streetwear and sportswear inflections, the spring 2022 lineup of uncomplicated track suits, oversize sweaters with holes and denim pants, is a celebration of Milan’s suburbia.

Marcello Pipitone Men’s Spring 2022 seen at WSM. 
Courtesy of White Milano.

The designer, who grew up in the Bonola district, splashed the neighborhood’s name across some of the styles as a means to “elevate the image of suburbs, places where younger people don’t have so many opportunities,” he said. Mindful of sustainability and currently handling manufacturing himself, he has been increasingly using upcycled materials for his brand.

White Milano Plots Size and Scope Expansion in the Aftermath of COVID-19
International Trade Show Calendar — Second Half 2021
International Trade Shows Find Renewed Purpose Post-COVID-19

September’s Salone del Mobile Uncertain, Trade Show President Exits

September’s Salone del Mobile Uncertain, Trade Show President Exits

MILAN — There seems to be no rest for the Salone del Mobile international furniture and interior design trade show as the upcoming edition slated for Sept. 5 to 10 is still to be confirmed and speculation is mounting that the event will be canceled and rescheduled for April 2022.
Talk of a potential cancellation of the event started circulating over the past few days here as several furniture and design firms, big and small, were said to be motivated to skip the upcoming Salone entirely considering the ongoing uncertainties related to the coronavirus pandemic and the expected lack of foreign buyers and visitors, casting a shadow on the September fair.
Last week, the government helmed by Prime Minister Mario Draghi greenlit trade shows starting from July 1, de facto allowing the furniture and design event to go ahead as planned. But exhibitors seem unlikely to jump onboard and this has prompted the longtime event’s president Claudio Luti to step down from his role.

In a note issued late Thursday night by his family design firm Kartell, Luti said: “I respect all decisions, but I don’t agree with the lack of will to join forces in such a delicate moment and try to define a concrete pathway to go ahead with the Salone, which could also represent a symbol of the country’s restart.

“I do recognize the difficulties and uncertainties that currently prevent us from casting a light on all the uncertainties related to the pandemic scenario, but what has been missing is a shared will,” he added.
Federlegno Eventi, the trade show organizer, acknowledged Luti’s resignation but has not named a successor.
The association also said a decision on the trade show’s upcoming event will be taken over the next few days. This is expected to take into account the cancellation-related penalty that Fiera Milano, which hosts the fair, would be contractually allowed to demand.
The Salone del Mobile and the related Design Week, accompanied by events across the city, is the most important global event in Milan, which is considered the international capital of design. In particular, it’s one of the key trade shows for the Fiera Milano company because of its international attendance.
In 2019, 386,236 people from 181 different nationalities visited the event, which hosted 2,418 exhibitors at the Fiera Milano fairgrounds, 34 percent of them from foreign countries.
According to figures provided by Confcommercio the event usually brings around 200 million euros to the city.
Carlo Sangalli, the association’s president, described a potential cancellation of the Salone as a “serious mistake,” noting that the rollout of the vaccination campaign and sanitary measures issued by the government would allow everyone to “look with optimism to the event.”
“The Salone del Mobile is among the most important events in Milan…after its cancellation last year, a restart would also have a symbolic meaning,” he said.
Last year, as the first wave of COVID-19 cases was spreading in Italy and abroad, Salone said it would skip the 2020 show entirely, hosting instead the 60th edition in April 2021. The second wave of the pandemic hitting Italy over the past few weeks scuttled that plan, prompting organizers to push it to September.

To celebrate its 60th anniversary, the September edition of the Salone del Mobile was expected to be flanked for the first time by the biennial Euroluce, EuroCucina and the Salone Internazionale del Bagno trade shows dedicated to lighting, kitchen design and bathroom furniture, respectively.

Lineapelle Digital-Only Edition Shows Potential of Italian Tanneries

Lineapelle Digital-Only Edition Shows Potential of Italian Tanneries

MILAN — When leather trade show Lineapelle announced in February that a physical edition slated for March 23 and 24 had to be moved online in the wake of surging COVID-19 cases in Italy and a slow-paced vaccination campaign, it was hard to predict how much the virtual fair — set up in less than two months — could manage to replace the usual IRL rendition.
Yet organizers were able to transfer the showcase of Italian tanneries by setting up a platform filled with webinars and digital interview-style presentations of the spring 2022 collections from 174 leading companies. The Meet and Match platform aimed at fostering conversations between industry professionals and offering business opportunities was flanked by the 365 Showroom, a marketplace displaying key products from each company along the same lines of what other trade fairs, including Milano Unica, Pitti Connect and Première Vision, have done.

Against the backdrop of a fragile economy and an uncertain landscape, tanneries presented reassuring spring 2022 collections, focusing on tactile and earth-toned hides that exuded a cocooning vibe. Natural shades like tan, chocolate brown and tangerine stood out at the digital fair, with suede and grainy cow or goat hides appearing in the collections of several exhibitors.
The sector as a whole has been underperforming in recent years, impacted by an economic instability that was already casting a shadow on leather sales before the pandemic hit. The appeal of real leather was also undermined by cost-containment measures implemented by mass market players.

Scuppered by the COVID-19 outbreak, 2020 made no exception.
“At the tail end of 2020 we were hopeful enough about the sector, but the first months of this year have already signaled a complex and lackluster outlook for Italian tanneries,” said Fabrizio Nuti, president of Unic, the association gathering the country’s tanneries. “Business is showing a spotty performance and unreasonable increased costs of raw materials, chemical compounds and transportation are worrying in that they might undermine a potential recovery,” he added.
According to preliminary figures provided by Unic in the January to November period last year, the Italian tannery sector is expected to close 2020 with sales down 26 percent compared to a year earlier, signaling a downturn in global consumption of leather products across sectors, with hides destined for fashion decreasing by 30 percent.
Reiterating the resilience and strength of the sector despite the hurdles, Nuti underscored that it’s hard to make predictions for 2021 as the performances of the main sectors the tannery industry serves, including fashion, design and automotive, are still uncertain.
According to the latest Bain & Co. Luxury Study in collaboration with Fondazione Altagamma, the leather goods category is expected to be among the first product categories to see a rebound in 2021, growing 16 percent compared to 2020 and returning this year to pre-pandemic levels, while ready-to-wear and shoes — on track to increase 14 percent — have yet to gain back lost market shares.
WWD surfed the Lineapelle Meet and Match Digital platform looking for the key leather trends for spring 2022.

Thick and textured hides and soft, malleable versions were equally popular at the fair, both exuding a tactile feel. The spring 2022 collection from Tuscany-based Sciarada included the Derma Line, full-grain hides suitable for women’s leather goods, and the Piuma calf option featuring a bigger grain that’s appropriate for men’s items, while the Velvina reversed calf and Satin baby calf were softer options for shoes and handbags.

The Sciarada “Satin” baby calf reverse suede. 
Courtesy of Sciarada.

Over at Conceria Gaiera Giovanni SpA, which was acquired last year by Chanel, Chicca Miramonti, among the company’s owners, explained that the focus for spring 2022 was on exalting the natural qualities of lamb and nappa leather, which was rendered locally in a broad range of colors. The thin Pashmina lambskin looked particularly soft and perfect for rtw pieces and in sync with the season’s mood.
Metal-free hides are becoming a true market standard, as companies continue to invest in sustainability by reducing chemical compounds, especially chrome, employed in the tanning process.
At Conceria Gaiera Giovanni, metal-free options were luxurious, soft and available in similar shades as regular hides, a testament to the company’s efforts in research and development and achievements in color fastness. Miramonti said blending high-tech sustainability with performance without sacrificing the natural look and feel of skins is a challenging process.
Similarly, Sciarada’s chief executive officer Simone Castellani underscored the eight-year research put into the Evolo line of eco-friendly suede. Based on circularity, hides are partly crafted from regenerated suede coming from pre-consumer waste without adding chrome to the production process. Boasting the Bureau Veritas certification, it allowed the company to save 66 percent of previous water consumption, 36 percent of chemicals and halved carbon dioxide emissions, all while requiring 10 production steps instead of the 16 needed for regular suede.
Meanwhile, the Cuoio di Toscana consortium of seven tanneries based in the Tuscany region proved the versatility of their outsole leather tanned with bio-based compounds derived from chestnut and quebracho trees or mimosa flowers for a capsule collection of accessories, including sunglasses, leather goods and shoes, developed in partnership with Milan-based stylist Simone Guidarelli.
Some companies have experimented with innovative and high-tech solutions to enhance leather performances by employing unexpected materials and compounds.
Conceria Nuvolari, a small, Marche-based company with a start-up mind-set, applied innovative treatments to its signature sheep and goatskins. For example, by using a graphene coating, leather boasts scratch-resistant and breathable qualities while achieving a 99.99 percent antibacterial property, a feature that has surged in demand across the entire fashion textile and material sector.

The Nuvolari “Neptune” range of water-resistent leather hides. 
Courtesy of Nuvolari.

Along the same performance-driven lines, it introduced the Neptune range, boasting a tenfold water repellency that makes it perfect for outerwear. Additionally, by leveraging its Nature-L proprietary tanning technique, introduced three years ago, Conceria Nuvolari managed to offer a chrome-free and 80 percent biodegradable leather that was assessed for the LCA certification by the Politecnico di Milano University.
Working a range of doubles, Sicerp combined suede and cowhides with other materials in order to enhance their performances. For instance, the tannery based in the outskirts of Milan employed recycled split suede coming from its own production of stretch leather, combining it recycled Lycra, denim and net, the latter aimed at sneakers and other footwear styles.
See also:
Milano Unica Highlights Key Textile Trends for Spring 2022
Tactile Fabrics, Performance Among Key Trends at Spring 2022 Première Vision Paris
Pitti Filati at Second Digital Test: Getting Better but Still Improvable

White Milano Offers Fresh View on Emerging Fashion Brands

White Milano Offers Fresh View on Emerging Fashion Brands

MILAN — Italian trade show White Milano has pledged to be the point of reference for Italy’s small and medium-sized fashion companies, which are viewed as emblematic of the country’s fashion expertise despite being the most severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
For its latest digital-only show, held Feb. 25 to 28 in conjunction with Milan Fashion Week, the fair hosted talks and webinars combined with a business-to-business platform and consumer-facing initiatives in hopes of supporting and preserving the country’s smallest fashion enterprises.
Massimiliano Bizzi, the founder of White Milano, noted that these firms often lack the financial and operational strength for marketing and communication activities, which the trade show aims to compensate for.

White Milano has always showcased up-and-coming brands, often in the contemporary sector. For its latest edition, among the more than 200 brands on show, the event picked several small and local businesses working with Italian artisans and family-owned suppliers. Some brands were even established last year in the midst of the pandemic, proving the resilience of the sector during the tumultuous year.
Here, WWD highlights the key trends and brands seen at the digital show.
KNITWEAR TOUCH: A strong trend seen on the Milan digital catwalks, knitwear was also on full display at the trade show. Highlighting the manufacturing techniques and luxury fabrics seemed to be the mantra for companies showing at White Milano, which skewed toward unfussy and everyday pieces perfect for layering.

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A standout among knitwear brands, Of Handmade designer Simona Guaini, who’s been creating one-of-a-kind handcrafted oversized sweaters, offered a collection of arty and tactile pieces embellished with floral and macramé-inspired patterns, as in a cozy camel turtleneck knitted in garter stitch with contrasting white and black decorations. While Guaini has been relying on Italian manufacturers, she is worried about losing her suppliers due to the pandemic and, in case demand increases, is planning to move part of the production to Peru.
A look from the Of Handmade fall 2021 collection presented at White Milano.  Courtesy of White Milano.

Blending influences from Northern European minimalism and traditional knit handicraft from Peru, Aymare was founded in 2007 by life and business partners Sven Van Gucht and Yannina Esquivias, who both left their previous jobs to fully commit to the fashion project. Their fall collection of everyday, unfussy knit crew necks, cable-knit turtlenecks and cardigans was crafted from baby alpaca, highlighting manufacturing techniques developed by local artisans in Arequipa, in the southern region of the Latin American country.
The story behind Verona, Italy-based Chiara Bertani is also one of reinvention: A storied knitwear company led by the namesake designer, which used to supply Italian luxury brands, the company decided to establish its own brand when its clients started to move production to China. Committed to delivering a total knitwear look, the label for fall played with relaxed silhouettes in an earthy palette of ocher, terra cotta brown and blush beige for knitted vests, pencil skirts paired with turtlenecks and second-skin crew necks embellished with rhinestone beads for a minimalist and chic look.

Similarly, the Mirella De Mori brand, founded by the second generation of the De Mori family who has run a knitwear company in the outskirts of Bergamo, Italy since 1957, offered a total look, crafted from luxurious cashmere given a contemporary twist by way of neon hues, such as lime green and cobalt blue. Pleated gowns were matched to color-coordinated oversize seed stitch turtlenecks with bows at the collar for a feminine look, while a tunic ribbed knit dress was fresh and young.
A look from the Mirella De Mori fall 2021 collection presented at White Milano.  Courtesy of White Milano.

FASHION FORWARD: Ready-to-wear brands took a two-pronged approach at the trade show, either showing genderless and unisex fashion or celebrating a feminine bohemian attitude.
The brainchild of Antonio Pontini and a circle of close friends and collaborators, the Vescovo brand was launched during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic last spring. First established as a multipurpose platform, it rapidly transitioned to fashion. Offering a genderless style, the brand builds on wardrobe essentials cut in generous silhouettes with a normcore bent. For fall pants came relaxed and pleated, paired with men’s formal shirts and off-the-shoulder knit vests, while roomy suits in an eggshell tone looked cool on male models and conceptual on women. Mindful of environmental issues, the brand largely employs recycled fabrics.
Also banking on unisex fashion, designers Elisa Soldini and Lucia Padrini set up outerwear brand Kimonorain, the name saying it all about the concept, on the ashes of their former total look fashion project Tvscia. Paying homage to Japanese kimonos, the brand offers waterproof jackets and coats in a variety of roomy silhouettes marked by a distinctive shell-shaped hoodie. While originally crafted from water resistant nylon, the two designers have most recently introduced natural fabrics, including cotton and wool treated to be rainproof. With their cocooning shapes, the Kimonorain pieces were a particularly appealing alternative to performance-driven puffer jackets.
A look from the Kimonorain fall 2021 collection presented at White Milano.  Courtesy of White Milano.

A retro-tinged mood ran through Vaderetro’s fall collection filled with upholstery fabrications for waist-fitted blazers boasting voluminous sleeves and cameo buttons or traditional shirting fabrics transformed into Western-inspired ruffled frocks paired with a corset featuring playful characters in the style of motifs used by alpine communities. The brand’s founder Antonio d’Andrea — who lived in the U.K. and Morocco before returning to Italy, where his brand became popular after showcasing at last year’s edition of Alta Roma — said the fall collection was inspired by the Rom population, an Indo-Aryan, traditionally nomadic community living in Europe, hence the melting pot of references seen in this arty and experimental lineup.
A look from the Vaderetro fall 2021 collection presented at White Milano.  Courtesy of White Milano.

MINIMALIST BAGS: Handbags for fall were sleek and timeless, inspired by architectural and design shapes, often featuring unexpected details such as the combination of contrasting materials and the use of resin peppering the subdued styles.
Inspired by Danish architecture following a trip to Copenhagen, designer Caterina Zulian established her namesake brand in 2020 aiming to offer luxurious bags with a contemporary feel. For fall she introduced two styles, both oversize and crafted from glossy leather, nodding to everyday carryover and business briefcases without compromising their feminine touch. While the carryover style with its round shapes and longer handles is a practical everyday option, the business bag boasts an off-kilter rectangular shape making it unconventional.
A bag from Caterina Zulian’s fall 2021 collection presented at White Milano.  Courtesy of White Milano.

Leveraging the expertise of Naples-based leather goods artisans, designer Anna Maria Mongillo established her Aim/Handmade in Italy brand last year despite the pandemic. Boasting experience consulting for fashion brands including the late Kate Spade’s Frances Valentine label, Mongillo started her solo fashion project with just four styles exuding a ’70s flavor imbued with geometrical details, cue a doctor bag crafted from supple leather featuring trapezoidal handles that make it practical to carry and sleek.
Domiziana Bertelli and Nicola Massardi took a similar approach for their Ni-Do brand’s fall handbag collection filled with stripped-back and retro-tinged styles, including a trapeze bag with a rounded resin grip and a cute mini baguette option with a chain handle, both crafted from leather the couple sources from leftovers of a Tuscany-based tannery that works with luxury brands.
A bag from the Ni-Do fall 2021 collection presented at White Milano.  Courtesy of White Milano.

See also:
Eveningwear at Milan Fashion Week Sparkles and Seduces
Tailoring Shifted From Office to Countryside at Milan Fashion Week
Italian Heritage Brands Keep Legacy Alive at Milan Fashion Week

White Milano Commits to Milan ‘Renaissance’

White Milano Commits to Milan ‘Renaissance’

MILAN — A collaborative mind-set is key for Italian trade show White Milano, which is gearing up to host its second digital-only edition Feb. 25 to 28, in conjunction with Milan Fashion Week.
The digital affair will combine talks, webinars, a business-to-business platform and consumer-facing initiatives in hopes of supporting and preserving the country’s small and medium-sized fashion enterprises.
Massimiliano Bizzi, the founder of the White Milano, is not only optimistic about the fair, but he is also looking long term to the renaissance of Milan and has the ambition to make it a reference point for the international fashion community in the post-pandemic future.
“Milan and fashion are one, we definitely need to rethink the way the sector is presented during fashion weeks,” he said during a Zoom call Thursday unveiling the program for the upcoming digital fair. “The industry has basically lost three seasons, from fall 2020 to fall 2021 and we need to change the status quo and leverage digital capabilities to involve final consumers,” he added.

White Milano has always been rooted in showcasing up-and-coming brands, often in the contemporary arena, and operated by SMEs which represent 90 percent of the fashion sector’s sales in the country. Bizzi noted that they often lack the financial and operational strength for marketing and communication activities, which the trade show aims to compensate.

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In order to support the system, Bizzi stressed the importance a joint effort by all involved entities. To this end, the number of partners the fair has amassed over the years include Confartigianato Imprese, Italy’s trade agency ICE and even a roster of showroom operators and buyers.
Among the last category, Beppe Angiolini, the marquee buyer from Arezzo, Italy-based shop Sugar praised the trade show for supporting smaller labels, an important role that has increased since digital buying has taken over physical appointments. “Making orders online is a tough process and it does not reward small companies, as retailers tend to favor established names, that are safer,” he said.
The upcoming White Milano event will feature more than 200 brands on its marketplace, including two special project areas dedicated to “advanced artisans” and to sustainability.
The former project will spotlight around 20 brands with an innovative bent, including denimwear specialist PeppinoPeppino and Brazil-based jeweler Nart Studio and along the same lines, White Milano has forged ties with Galleria&Friends a Milan-based association gathering the city’s artisanal boutiques.
A key topic for White Milano, sustainability is increasingly viewed as competitive advantage rather than compliance with regulations, as ICE president Carlo Maria Ferro put it. To this end, the second project, called  “A Good Job,” will be dedicated to eco-friendly labels including vegan bag maker Tiziano Guardini, Roberto di Stefano and footwear brand Yatay.
As reported, the trade show is linking with Altaroma, giving brands that showcased at the Rome event an opportunity to digitally catch up with buyers.
While enthusiastic about February, Bizzi is looking forward to September’s fashion week for a full rebound supported by physical events, which will give a boost of confidence to the country and its fashion industry. He and Angiolini share the dream of hosting a number of consumer-facing events throughout the city, in line with what Milan Design Week has been able to do over the past years.

Meanwhile, to support a rebound throughout 2021, ICE has unveiled 14 new initiatives to boost e-commerce operations via b-to-c deals with 26 international online shops, including Germany’s Mytheresa, as reported, and a b-to-b partnership with Alibaba through which Italian SMEs can reach around 140 countries worldwide. Ferro noted that despite an overall drop in exports, reduced from 16.9 percent in May to 9.4 percent at the end of last year, the fashion sector was among the most severely impacted.
Joining the press conference, Mario Boselli, the honorary president of the national fashion chamber, provided an optimistic forecast. “The COVID-19 pandemic is often described as a ‘war,’ however we did not lose our assets, the industrial complexes,” he said. “It’s as if a lamp was turned off but we can definitely turn it back on as soon as the situation improves,” he said, citing the recovery China has already experienced as one good example.

Salone del Mobile Postpones 2021 Edition to September

Salone del Mobile Postpones 2021 Edition to September

PUSHING AHEAD: Uncertainties related to the coronavirus pandemic are extending into 2021: On Thursday, Salone del Mobile organizers said it would postpone the international furniture and interior design trade show to Sept. 5 to 10. It was originally slated to take place from April 13 to 18 at Milano-Rho fairgrounds.
Last March, as the first wave of COVID-19 cases was spreading in Italy and abroad, Salone said it would skip the 2020 event entirely, hosting instead the 60th edition in April 2021. The second wave of the pandemic hitting Italy over the past few weeks scuttled that plan.
“Being able to hold the Salone [del Mobile] next year is an absolute priority for all of us whose lives depend on the design sector. We have tried very hard over the last few weeks not to make announcements that might subsequently have to be denied or revised in the wake of the evolving situation,” said Claudio Luti, president of the Salone del Mobile.

He noted that the new dates were selected to reflect the needs of other trade-show operators in the country hosting their shows at the Fiera Milano pavilions.
As reported, five Italian fashion fairs including Micam, Mipel, Lineapelle, TheOne Milano, and Homi Fashion&Jewels Exhibition jointly revealed this week that they would postpone their upcoming editions at the Milano-Rho pavilions to March 20-24 — a month later than usual.

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“Now that we have achieved the best possible all-round solution, thanks to the collaboration of Fiera Milano, we are in a position to confirm the new dates. We also believe that moving the fair to September will leave enough time for the ongoing acute phase of the pandemic to subside and that this will provide a real chance to jumpstart the design [sector] on a global level,” Luti added.
The Salone del Mobile and the related Design Week, animated by a events across the city, is the most important global event in Milan, which is considered the international capital of design. In particular, it’s one of the key trade shows for the Fiera Milano company because of its international attractiveness.
“We’ll be there, and we’ll be even more attractive and more motivated, just as motivated as the companies working to design and manufacture the best possible products. After such a lengthy period of physical and social distancing, we would like to be able to see the Salone as an opportunity for IRL meetings and discussions, and a chance for us all to share our excitement with a city buzzing with new ideas,” Luti noted.
In 2019, 386,236 people from 181 different nationalities visited the event, which hosted 2,418 exhibitors, 34 percent of them from foreign countries.
Listed on the Italian Stock Exchange, Fiera Milano’s shares were down 1.9 percent to 2.84 euros by early afternoon on Thursday.
To celebrate its 60th anniversary, the September edition of the Salone del Mobile will be flanked for the first time by the biennial Euroluce, EuroCucina and the Salone Internazionale del Bagno trade shows dedicated to lighting, kitchen design and bathroom furniture, respectively.

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