26 Aug 2009 - 8:28 am

An exhibition was organized last year at Milan’s Palazzo Reale, that delved inside the world of the of the late Italian designer Mila Schön through rare images and creations. The exhibition was a success that the Maison developed a book, entitled M is for Mila, that celebrates in style the 50th anniversary of the fashion house.

Born in Dalmatia in 1919, Mila Schon innate taste and firm determination took her into the world of fashion. She began by designing clothes for her friends, the wealthy ladies of the Milanese bourgeoisie.

She opened her first small atelier in 1958 and seven years later, in 1965, made her debut on the prestigious Florentine prêt-à-porter catwalks in the legendary Sala Bianca of Palazzo Pitti. In 1966 she conquered America, where she received the Neimann Marcus Award, the fashion Oscar, and was then the first Italian fashion designer to arrive in Japan.

Unlike French fashion featuring Dior’s corolla forms and Balenciaga’s volumetric constructions, Mila Schön’s style was dictated by simple, clear-cut lines. She studied new materials and they became her trademark, such as the double face combining two fabrics.

The 360-page volume M as Mila by Patrizia Gatti follows Mila Schön’s career from her early beginnings on. A rich photographic corpus – including images by Henry Clarke, David Bailey, Guy Bourdin, Giampaolo Barbieri, Satoshi Saïkusa, Ugo Mulas and Barry Lategan amongst others – illustrates the history of the fashion house.

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