For Restless Sleepers Pre-Fall 2022

As far as fashion collabs go, none is more yin-yang oriented than that between Francesca Ruffini and Umit Benan—she, a woman of refined elegance and reading; he, an ebullient rake with a thing for über-luxe, slightly rough-at-the-edges cool. Yet as the saying goes, opposites attract, and this creative marriage seems to be a match made in heaven.

Ruffini loves spending time in the often off-limits archives of the oldest silk printers in Como, which are among the best on earth. To research this season, she brought along Benan, who’s famously averse to florals, graphics, and patterns of all kinds. “He looked like a child in a candy store,” said Ruffini. Was that Benan blushing from the other side of the Zoom screen?

Instead of going for the figurative motifs Ruffini favors, Benan’s eye was caught by an old textile, where oily seeds had been layered over to dry, leaving tiny irregular marks on its surface. “If I had been by myself, I wouldn’t have even considered it,” admitted Ruffini. The motifs were transformed digitally into an abstract print; an old raffia woven mat also provided a textured pattern, reproduced on classic, dense silk twill or recycled silk woven from waste yarn into a wooly fabric, soft and warm like double cashmere.

Benan’s nonchalant personal style gave the FRS collection what he called “a frisson of attitude”: “I don’t like perfection,” he said. “I always feel the need to break it with something subversive and slightly off.” He usually wears a men’s dressing gown underneath one of his tailored double-breasted coats, so he’s naturally attuned to Ruffini’s signature look, rooted in loungewear. Taking a turn for the unisex and the androgynous, daywear pajamas and robes were cut from traditional masculine templates, just slightly reproportioned to fit feminine body shapes. Padded-silk jackets, quilted pants, and shorts were new introductions, winter variations on the indoor-outdoor theme. An avid skier, Ruffini swears they’re perfectly suitable also for the slopes. Benan, who is an equally avid snowboarder, agrees. It’s an imperfect-chic look, relaxed, cool, and a bit extravagant, just the way they both like it.

Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.