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Meet Franca Sozzani’s New Protégé

Who Is On Next? AltaRoma and Vogue Italia’s common initiative to scout and promote young designers and independent labels has become somewhat of a fashion tradition and celebrated its 10-year anniversary by selecting a new protégé, Sicilian womenswear designer, Salvatore Piccione.

“Having the opportunity to meet so many great people from the fashion industry is such an honor. I worked very hard for it,” stated the designer after his show. “I design every single part of my collection. I draw the prints and conceive the embroideries by myself; I try to convey beauty and glamour in womenswear and yet keep my silhouettes simple.”

Born and raised in Sicily, Salvatore Piccione graduated from Rome’s reputed Istituto Europeo di Design in 2008. He then gained considerable experience in womenswear by working as a fashion and print designer for Mary Katrantzou and applied his expertise to Katrantzou’s special projects, which comprised of collaborations with Swarovski, Topshop, and Longchamp, among others. He then worked as a freelance print designer for Céline in 2012 and currently collaborates with the British womenswear brand, Hobbs, while developing his eponymous womenswear brand, Piccione•Piccione.

In this year’s lineup, which included candidates Daizy Shely and the French bag designer brand, Corion, Piccione distinguished himself by producing a bucolic-inspired Spring 2015 collection. His pixelized prints and adornments were declined in eye-catching hues of mauve, pink, lime green, sunny yellow, and light blue on white, figure-hugging A-shaped cocktail dresses, short skirts, and jackets paired with collared shirts with fluid draping and pleated detailing.

In a speech that concluded the Who Is On Next? runway show on July 14th, Vogue Italia’s Editor-in-Chief, Franca Sozzani and AltaRoma’s Chairwoman, Silvia Venturini Fendi, lauded Piccione’s distinguished take on ornamental, handcrafted embroidery, passion for 3D-detailing, and architectural elements.

Established in 2005, the scouting project Who Is On Next?, which was declared by the Financial Times to be one of the “10 World’s Most Important Fashion Prizes,” was conceived to promote young designers by giving them professional guidance and providing a platform to showcase their collections at AltaRoma. Previous winners included Esme Vie (2013) and Gabriele Colangelo (2007). As of today, Piccione•Piccione is produced and distributed by Errebi Srl, an Italian company based in Milan and is sold in almost one hundred selling points worldwide, including Luisa Via Roma and Harvey Nichols.

Pictures: AltaRoma, Raffalele Soccio / Luca Sorrentino
—Elisabeta Tudor

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