MARIUCCIA MANDELLI – KRIZIA
(1935; Italy) After getting the teacher-training high school diploma, Mariuccia Mandelli began to create simple and straight skirts that leads around Italy with the purpose of selling them. Her logo is a K, Krizia initial, name taken from a Plato’s dialogue about the vanity. Success begins in ’57, at Samia of Turin (one of the first events where fashion collections were presented to the public). On that occasion Krizia proposes a series of fruit- clothing in giant printed that immediately strike the public cause of their simplicity, considered by someone even extreme, insomuch as a Grazia magazine journalist and a Bendel’s one, a small but prestigious New York magazine, remain really eager and they launch her into fame.
The importance of Krizia is given by the fact that she renewed the traditional fashion: creating, for example, pullovers characterized by multiple types of yarn, while at that time the twin-set was fashionable, and her debut in the prêt-à-porter sees pleated dress (her characteristic). This designer has always had a predilection for knitting, so that in ’67 born “Krizia Maglie” and when an important manufacturer of yarn commissions her a sweater that would symbolize the wool, she creates the first inlaid sweater which represent a sheep, then used the felines, like the stylized black panther so fashionable in the ’20s, which became her symbol and so her inlaid animals are born.
Krizia becomes increasingly important, so from handmade she become industrial and she starts to use special materials like the skin of eel or fish, shiny metallic fabrics like chocolates, Kabubi leather which changes color with light and warmth, the jasmine scented deerskin, real cork, rigid plastic and she put precious elements into sports clothes. She is really famous in America thanks of her extravagant innovations and she is called “Crazy Krizia”, even at the Grey Art Gallery in New York for the first time was presented a show about a fashion designer ( about her). The materials to show were borrowed from the Milan Triennale in which was presented her 40 carrier years).
It is also interesting to see the issues from which she takes inspiration for her collections: from modern and contemporary art to historical references, but she never loses her precise nature (and at the same time transgressive) in developing the garments, with a considerable attention to the shoulders , which follow a real evolution, keeping faith with her ideal of free-spirited woman, very feminine and not built. She is also part of that minority of designers who in the 70s decides to leave the Florentine runways to arrive in Milan and it was a success. Walter Albini and Karl Lagerfeld worked for her and they became very famous.
In 1971, when fashion scheduled only the maxi and midi, she presents a collection of very short shorts (hot pants), with which in Capri she win the ” Tiberio d’oro ” award. From his moment Krizia will propose a fashion characterized by the perfectionism, the highest finishings and the attention to details, aiming at a sophisticated style even in its extreme simplicity.