MFW: CIVIDINI F/W 2014

Cividini may be one of the smallest labels to be showing at Milan Fashion Week. Piero and Miriam Cividini started just three years ago with a line of cashmere sweaters. They have quickly grown their brand to a full range of read-to-wear, including purses, belts, and gloves. The focus on innovation, style, and technology. While the base fabrics they use are traditional, such as wool and cotton, they utilize sources that mill and loom in ways that make fabrics stronger, more durable, and more appropriate for the styles they create.

One this about it, the Cividinis are going to keep one warm. Heavy with brushed wool checks, the first several looks are strong enough that one may not need an overcoat accept in the most severe of winter weather. Thankfully, most the looks are sufficiently layered so that one can remove a jacket and scarf to avoid sweltering inside heated buildings. Because this is not your grandmother’s wool, though, pieces are surprisingly light weight and don’t impose themselves as heavily upon the wearer as they might have a decade ago. Where there is not wool, we find blends of cotton, some touches of leather, and even velvet and sheers in the last few after 5 looks. All these are carefully constructed and well tailored to hold up to the rigors of winter.

Silhouettes loosely resemble those of the early 1960s, though not so strongly as to be instantly recognizable in any but a couple of standout pieces. While there is a feminine curve, dresses and separates are still loose enough that one can not worry about still fitting into the clothes after missing a few days at the gym. Hem lines typically dance just above the knee and pants, not too terribly tapered, stop just above the ankle.

A couple of things stand out in this collection. The Cividinis apparently like scarves but don’t like them getting in the way. Pictures don’t do the collection justice here, because the layered ensembles hide how they’ve been styled: over on shoulder then under a jacket or vest on the opposite side. This is an interesting look, to be sure, but I can’t speak as to how well it might catch on. Several ensembles also have a rather mysterious fur piece on the right shoulder. At first glance I thought it was a padded bag strap, a thoughtful gesture for those heavy laptop cases and such. However, the straps don’t actually carry anything. Instead, they attach to belts for no immediate purpose other than convenient padding should one need it. Visually, the pads interrupt the visual flow of the neckline, which I’m not sure most people will find all that appealing.

I can say that this is a most wearable collection of primarily day wear. Those whose daily jaunts might have them out in the elements a little more than normal, such as long walks across a college or corporate campus, would do well to invest in a few of these ensembles. The challenge may be finding them, though, as stocklists for this fall were not yet available. We wish the Cividinis well and look forward to seeing what they bring next season.

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