The lines of Stella Jean Fall Winter 2017/2018 find their way through the intense cold of the enigmatic Cold War

COLD WAR

 The tangible tension of a latent conflict arises through the perception of the U.S. Army, completed with trimmings and embroidered details of medal and military ranks, alternating with the lively immediacy of figurative prints and hand paintings inspired by the fairy-tale naïfs of the Russian counterpart.

Garments, eco-leathers and eco-furs light up in saturated colours of Soviet inspiration.

Skirts are transformed into dresses and vice versa to emphasize their intensive functionality (to emphasize their extreme versatility), natural (necessary) consequence in times of conflict. The ice of hostility creaks, crumbles along with the collapse of a wall in Berlin which has stood for 28 long years, failed warning of the many, too many barriers that still continue to stand in the name of a “photo-shopped” civilization, to separate, detain and violate the rights and freedom of peoples and cultures.

When the aurora borealis and the Siberian winds give way to the charm of the nearest East, crossroads of ancient cultures, the smell of the conflict becomes acrid and breaks into the collection with a piece full of history and meaning, to remind us that the war has never been so cold. The “Propaganda” clutch bag, conceived in Damascus and inspired by a backgammon box, a popular traditional game in Syria, is the light baggage of those who are fleeing and bringing along a distillation of knowledge, memory and hope. In the desert of destruction, this minaudière, symbol of resilience in terms of manufacture, workmanship and journeying, was made in a craft workshop in Damascus and, hidden in an overnight truck, continued its journey to Beirut and reached Italy (Milan), to become the “megaphone” of a culture that does not want to succumb.

Resistance to those who, on a different chessboard, would like us to be perfect soldiers and obedient pawns of the perfect strategy of the “divide et impera” (divide and rule).

The slogan “One, No One and One Hundred Thousand Kilometers” stands out on t-shirts and knitted dresses to symbolize:

One: we start from our place of birth, the training with the knowledge of tradition and our gaze set on the future;

No one: zero kilometers is the inner being of each of us, a journey inside oneself to pick and choose in one’s memory;

One hundred thousand: the kilometers we choose to cover starting from our angle of vision to proceed inside stories and cultures of distant people. With the aim of creating business and trade which preserve the traditions of local communities and the infinite wealth of ancient knowledge at risk of extinction, triggering a mechanism of independence which disrupts disastrous social welfare.

An example of how fashion, beyond aesthetics, can be transformed into a tool of counter-colonization and become a cultural vehicle and expression for growth and liberation at the same time economic, social and ethical.

GARMENTS

Garments inspired by the Russian world and the military world, with the application of medals, ranks and trimmings overlapped on shirts and blouses made of classic checked shirt fabrics, or in fabrics printed with the collection’s motifs; coats, jackets and skirts with the application of fringes, laces and pom-poms; jacket and coat in eco-mink with contrasting fine rib structure and Yoruba motifs; coat and jacket in eco-mink and in spotted eco-fur with application of medals or trimmings; Barbour style waxed fabric jacket with application of medals; quilted velvet outerwear with Yoruba motifs; cyclist’s jerseys and knitted dress with embroidered “One, No One and One Hundred Thousand Kilometres”; pullovers with Russian naïf motif prints or embroidered with military ranks and medals; tops, dresses and pullovers with circular embroidery around the neck; dresses, skirts and tops with rich wool yarn embroidery or beads; evening dresses and skirts with printed or embroidered panels; long evening dress with precious removable collar and cuffs; dresses cut above the bosom, transformable into skirts.

All knitted garments are entirely hand-made and embroidered in Umbria, Italy, by local artisans. Prints with wax and kente motifs, Yoruba inspiration prints, Russian figurative type naïf print, Russian inspiration prints (cockerels and flowers with cross-stitch effect, Russian flounces).

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