Playful Classics from Italy's Lazzari
The Parent Trap reenacted with a '60s inspired breakfast-themed collection for A/W14
It's easy enough to put cute animal prints over blouses and dresses—as many fast fashion retailers are doing—to draw attention, but to make a well-crafted quality piece that manages to be both playful and elegant, is an admirable feat. One brand that continuously hits this mark is Veneto, Italy-based label Lazzari. Charmed by the cute yet feminine skirt with shark pockets introduced last season, we did a bit more digging—and as it turns out designer Alice Lunardi isn't just a young designer taking advantage of pop culture, she comes from a family of tailors and produces all Lazzari pieces exclusively in Italy. Her knack for blending a contemporary aesthetic with classic silhouettes is perfectly showcased in the current breakfast-themed A/W14 collection, which plays out in a lookbook inspired by the 1961 film "The Parent Trap."
"I was literally raised among dresses and clothes," Lunardi tells CH. "My parents had a clothing company and my grandmother was a tailor. I used to spend a lot of time with her at her place where she used to receive her clients. I was there during their fitting, and used to imitate her gestures and without even realizing it, I was learning a lot. If she was kneeling down to see if the hem was straight, I was doing the same. When she was finished with clients and appointments, we could [work on] my Barbie's dresses!"
Lazzari clothes are made with "extreme love and attention" by a team of dedicated Italian tailors, which happen to be mostly women. "What is unique about Lazzari is the resolute purpose to create and produce exclusively in Italy," she continues. And, while this is obviously important to Lunardi, it's the approachable brand identity that draws the most attention. "We want to create clothes that can make you smile without being ridiculous. Our aim is to achieve an important and long-lasting place in a girl's closet, both for the quality that we offer and because our collections do not follow a seasonal trend but have an everlasting look," Lunardi says, explaining her penchant for vintage. Fabric selection furthers each piece as well, as Lunardi notes her love of classical fabrics that have an English touch, such as tweed or velvet cord, but also fabrics that ooze femininity like mohair and angora.
"'The Parent Trap' was one of those films (like 'That Darn Cat!' or 'The Ugly Dachshund') I used to keep on watching over and over," says Lunardi on the origin of her many inspirations. "Ideas and fun themes come from what I love the most, cats and animals in general—we 'quote' them without stealing their fur!—childhood illustration, films, music, etc. This season I decided to do a statement of love for my favorite moment of the day: breakfast," continues Lunardi. "I love to think that wearing clothes is like a game somehow, but since it's also an investment for my clients, I also make sure that the [amusing] details are proportioned and wearable." From afar, each piece is classic and well-tailored, but up close is where you can spot the playful details like croissant collars and subtle blue-black tiger stripe pants.
Certain pieces of the A/W14 collection are already available from Lazzari online and in their five stores around Veneto. The remainder of the collection will be released regularly, so be sure to visit back. And have no fear: though the spring collection is long gone, that shark skirt is still available for purchase on Etsy.
Lookbook images by Giulia Tibaldi and Giordano Garosio courtesy of Lazzari, all other images courtesy of Lazzari