Alexander Fury: Hats off to the late, great Anna Piaggi and her sense of style
Wear, what, why, when?
The event of Milan fashion week didn't happen on the catwalk: rather, in someone's living room. Granted, that living room belonged to the late, great Anna Piaggi – one of the few people who actually warrants the over-used phrase “icon”, given her extraordinary sense of personal style, and the way she translated that on to the magazine page.
I use the past tense because, as any fashion fan worth knicker elastic will tell you, Signora Piaggi died last year shortly before the spring 2013 collections began in her hometown of Milan. The Milanese must-see event was the exhibition “Hat-Ology”, curated by Stephen Jones and seemingly supported by the great and good of Italian fashion. Everyone from the Mayor of Milan to the Camera Nazionale Della Moda (Italian fashion's governing body) had a hand in it, but Jones –Piaggi's life-long friend and hat maker of choice – was the man behind the exhibition, an intimate recreation of her Milanese home, albeit packed with hats.
Then again, that was pretty much the way Piaggi actually lived. Jones shrouded each vignette with nets because, he grinned, “Anna always asked me to add a veil – so here's more veiling than she could ever want!”
I never met Piaggi. I sometimes sat behind her, a Stephen Jones titfer nestled among her marcel-waved hair, usually dyed a shade between lavender and cerulean, blocking my view. It varied day to day, a cross between a mullet and a mood-ring. She terrified me, in the way some people in fashion do.
The great thing about fashion – if you've grown up idolising its leading characters – is that you could easily end up sitting next to the equivalent of a premier league footballer or a media mogul. What can you say in that sort of situation? It's easy to get tongue-tied around a woman you've idolised since you were a teenager. And, of course, if you say that you could easily get a smack across the face.
Life & Style blogs
The 10 Best Scotch Whiskies
Resurgence of TB poses grave threat worldwide
Titanfall: First-person shooter lands with a boom on Xbox One, but will it save Microsoft's console?
GIF inventor Steve Wilhite says it should be pronounced 'jif'
'Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle!' Viral Facebook links are profiting hackers
- 1 Is your name now 'banned' in Saudi Arabia?
- 2 Gender-specific books demean all our children. So the Independent on Sunday will no longer review anything marketed to exclude either sex
- 3 Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Did jetliner fly into area controlled by Taliban? Net widens after claims final satellite signal could have been sent from the ground
- 4 Nasa-funded study warns of ‘collapse of civilisation’ in coming decades
- 5 'Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle!' Viral Facebook links are profiting hackers
£50000 - £60000 per annum: Charter Selection: This well respected and exciting...
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Charter Selection: This exciting company and market...
£40000 - £60000 per annum + EXCELLENT SALARY: Austen Lloyd: Senior Private Cli...
£25,000 to £35,000: IT Connections Ltd: Signal Processing Engineer / Acoustics...