Luisa Beccaria seems emblematic of her brand’s customer: Today, clad in a flowy pink chiffon chemisier of her own design, she greeted her posse of highborn Milanese friends at a presentation-cum-show held in the beautiful courtyard of the San Simpliciano Cloisters, a site rarely open to the public. Models in dresses as delicate as a soufflé were scattered along the monastic arcades of the secluded garden, with fountains dripping and soulful music playing on the soundtrack. It made for an evocative set, well suited to showcase a style that has proved perfect for posh weddings and exclusive debutante balls.
LUISA BECCARIA MASTER OF STYLE
The international jet set’s Designer equally divided between work and family
Text by Michela Zio
The American magazine W, bible of fashion business, wrote about her: «She is an icon of a super-sensual style, trendy but not trendy, poetical and cool”. Indeed, her atelier in via Fiori Chiari, in the heart of the noblest part of Milan, is a clear example of ageless elegance, rooted in distant times.
Luisa Beccaria, stylist and super-mom, is the most well-known descendant of the jurist Cesare Beccaria, Dei delitti e delle pene’s author, but also of Giulia Beccaria, mother of Alessandro Manzoni, the greatest Italian man of letters in the nineteenth century. Luisa married Lucio Bonaccorsi di Reburdone, a Sicilian prince.
They met in 1982, in a villa on the slopes of Mount Etna, and got married the following year, in a small and romantic church situated in the Oltrepò Pavese, next to Bossola, Beccaria family’s country house. «I wore a self-designed dress, in flounced white silk organza, a la Scarlett O’Hara, and a broad brimmed hat with tulle flaps and chiffon wrapping the face”. One of her first creations.
London jet set’s stylist, starting from Sarah Ferguson and Camilla Parker Bowles, Lady Normanby and Laura Bailey, Domitilla Getty and Katryn Henkel, really popular among Hollywood stars such as Angelina Jolie, Madonna, Sarah Jessica Parker and Nicole Kidman, took her first steps in fashion’s world in 1978, with the organization of fashion shows in Milan’s art galleries, to display a small number of pieces.
«I owe a lot to this city as it let me best express my inner demon, or the willing to realize myself in a craft born by chance. I was 20 years old and I had a very thin body. I couldn’t find anything that fitted me well. So I began to create my own clothes, having them sewn by a seamstress”.
There she saw Piero Fornasetti, the contemporary Italian artist, author of one of the largest productions of furniture and household items, who decided to bring Luisa’s clothes in his atelier to create an exhibition-market out of them. “They were all sold in three days. People liked them because they were different: fabric was made of old upholstery bought in London, but also of lace from curtains found in Resina’s second-hand market, in the suburbs of Naples».
The Vendome group, former owner of Chloè, was among the first ones to foresee the stylist’s potential so she was offered the artistic direction of the maison, in place of Karl Lagerfield. However, Luisa refused and Stella McCartney took the helm. In the meanwhile she was going on with fashion shows for Parisian high fashion, before moving definitely to ready-to-wear. Despite her family.
Indeed, collection after collection, show after show, the stylist gave birth to five beautiful children: Lucilla, the firstborn who is now helping her mother in the atelier activity, Lucrezia, graduated in Interior Design at St Martin School, Ludovico, Luna, who lives in London, and the last 14 year-old boy, Luchino, who’s still attending school. “I owe all this to Milan that allowed me to raise my children better than in any other city. Because I live and work in Brera, a pocket inner city, where everything is at your fingertips: school, shops, the paediatrician». Last February, right in the capital of design and fashion, Luisa organized her last catwalk in an exceptional location: the Bagatti Valsecchi Palace. The models created tableau vivant in the museum’s rooms wearing the 2014/15 A-W outfits.
On the other hand, summer outfits characterized an advertising campaign that in the last months covered London with blow-ups of beautiful girls portrayed for Aldo Coppola.
Another famous Italian artist in the UK. «We have a unique sense of beauty, recognized all around the world. For this reason we should stimulate an improvement in the aesthetics of fashion, as in that of architecture, food and design. Because our trends are interpreted by the mass and if they are born in a vulgar way, when they reach people it’s inevitable to see them collectively barbarized. I’m talking about written t-shirts, tight jackets and jeans showing underpants». The lesson of style is served.
Luisa Beccaria Spring 2015
Time Life presents ‘Flower Power
Delicate and decisive World’s flower garden.
is the woman Luisa Beccaria wrapped in clothes that gently glide on the Female Body and will nourish the Trompe-l’œil silhouette come alive that goes for the whole day .
What clothes echo undergarments with watercolors , alternating with the Warm Tones of pink, powder until strawberry. The big picture was a riff on the image of fluid grace.