Anybody appointed to revitalize a 70-year-old fashion house that has been through hands of various owners and designers would be under great pressure. Rodolfo Paglialunga, a former designer at Prada was told to re-launch an idea of fashion that is contemporary, without forgetting the outstanding aspects of its history, the history of Vionnet.
Madeleine Vionnet's trademarks—handkerchief hems, halter-necks, and form-fitting silhouette captured the most beautiful aspect of classical Greek aesthetics: the body and movement. The code decided by the new owner—drapes, asymmetry, and geometry—however, are easier to be deciphered than to be reinterpreted.
In the fashion world of 4D technology, live-stream filming and more experimental marketing tactics to come, generating excitement whilst staying true to the legacy may be a daunting task. If any narrative and commentary beyond the clothes themselves better underlie the inherent authenticity of the fashion house, I think Madeleine Vionnet’s very own perspective of fashion may provide a rooted standpoint for interpretation: “There is something superficial and volatile about the seasonal and elusive whims of fashion which offends my sense of beauty.”
References: NYT, Independent, psfk
Vionnet's handkerchief dress, 1920
Vionnet Salon in Paris
Vionnet under Rodolfo Paglialunga
Carey Mulligan in Vionnet