The Brands: Meroni, L’Arabesque: “Fairy tale and nature inspire my work”

4 months ago

“I believe in the importance of fairy tale, nature, and art as sources of inspiration for my work,” explained Chichi Meroni, owner of the Milan concept store L’Arabesque while presenting her brand’s latest f/w 2024/25 collection and some new projects during the last Milan Fashion Week.

“Nature is our mantra, it is like an immense mother that embraces the world and that we must never stop loving,” continued the entrepreneur and designer who owns the store, the brand, the adjoining restaurant and the 1950s-60s-70s furniture and research design store, near to the store in Largo Augusto 10, Milan, as well as other businesses, including an archive visited by many designers’ style offices looking for inspiration.

The collection features a series of black dresses composed of multi-layered skirts in taffeta, silk, tulle, voile, other materials and appliqués. The garments resemble corollas of flowers worn together with coats, jackets and research blouses. Some light touches stand out on the collection through brown tending to burgundy and blue tips.

Three-dimensional flowers also decorate the surface of dresses-embroidered, set, or leaning, but always vivid.

Delicate 3-D roses adorn dresses with asymmetrical ruffles and other elements, along with maxi daisies and velvet hellebores embellishing full skirts, as well as large tulips standing out on long military coats.

Sources of inspiration for this collection, as for the entire L’Arabesque brand, are the travels that the designer/entrepreneur makes in various parts of the world and particularly in Japan.

For this season, she chose to create clothes such as large psychedelic flowers inspired by the magical symbolism of Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, and the dream world expressed by Parc Güell, a park in Barcelona designed by Antoni Gaudí, examples that feature vegetal motives and landscapes dense with symbolism.

The designer creates the entire collection, which she manufactures in her Milan atelier located above the store together with eight experienced tailors, produced in limited quantities and often made-to-order.

Since s/s 2024 the brand also offers the L’Arabesque Girl collection aimed at a younger audience, offering more affordable, more colorful and lively garments suitable for 18-20 year-old girls.

From s/s 2022 Chichi Meroni also offers Recercle, a collection made by dismantling unsold garments after the stop imposed by covid, and transformed into completely new pieces.

“I don’t like waste. I’m against throwing away new products made from quality materials like these and contributing to producing piles of garments to be destroyed,” Meroni explained.

“Nature loves us and embraces us, but it can also overwhelm us if we do not respect it. For these reasons we try not to eliminate many materials that we already have in our atelier and try to reuse it as much as possible. Also for the same reason, we often use many carry-over fabrics,” he added.

The store offers several lines that are part of the brand. In addition to Girl and Recycle, it offers Play, another more affordable line, its Couture made-to-measure and made-to-order exclusive selection, and the main collection Arabesque.

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