Autumn showers bring Fendi flowers.
I left early for a night out in the lovely Ligurian town of Chiavari with my friend and long-time collaborator Michele. If you know me, you’ll know that I am on the hunt every time I board a train. The fact that it was not market day was not a problem because I always have a few evergreen treasure troves up my sleeve!
I walked into my favorite consignment shop where I have found some of my favorite pieces, and sandwiched between a bunch of puffy Woolwich coats—if you have ever been in Italy during the winter you know what I’m referring to!—was a 1980s monogram-style raincoat.
I noticed the stripes from afar—I am always in search of good vintage stripes—but as I got closer, I recognized the pattern: “FENDI, FENDI, FENDI” was written all over the coat. Still suspicious of its authenticity, I examined the coat thoroughly and went for the tag: FENDI!
This is pretty much what my face looked like when I ran to grab the coat before someone else could…even though I was the only person in the store. What can I say? My reaction was pure instinct.
I was high on lux and hoped I would find more goodies, but—if you followed my IG stories that day you would know—I only came across a bunch of fake Gucci bags. Good quality, but fake. Very fake. So, I peaced out.
I absolutely adore Italian companies that started as family businesses like FENDI, which was founded by Adele and Edward Fendi in 1925. Even better are the ones that were subsequently taken over by badass Italian women…also like FENDI. Second-generation Fendi sisters Paola, Anna, Franca, Carla and Alda who, as infants, slept in the doors of the first FENDI store, took over the company in 1946. Anna’s daughter Silvia eventually came on board as well. Other companies taken over by awesome Italian women that give me those girl-power vibes are Missoni, helmed by matriarch Rosita and her daughter Angela, and Versace, which is run by the almighty Donatella. (You should know that I am very jealous of anyone who is watching The Assassination of Gianni Versace at the moment!)
Little Italian details: The coat is a testament to how Italians take pride in their product. This jacket was most likely worn until its owner grew out of it or passed away. The inherent mentality of Italians—buy less, buy well—never ceases to amaze me. So, yes, the outer part has some signs of wear, but overall the jacket was incredibly well kept. I could fly away on the vintage high I got from finding this baby and it made me realize how lucky I am to be a vintage buyer in Italy, the land of iconic designers!
Photos done by Nina Campioni.