Courtly Love

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Fannie Schiavoni is the London-based designer whose dramatic accessories and jewellery have been seen adorning the person of a growing number or celebrities of late. Katy Perry, Rihanna and Lady Gaga are but a few of the women in the limelight who have been more than happy to be spotted in Fannie’s recent collections that focus heavily on elongated lengths of swathed chain link motifs.

Originally from Sweden, Fannie moved to London at the age of 18 to study tailoring. Her talent and determination meant that she was able to make good use of experience gained under the tutelage of designers such as Hussein Chalayan and Giles Deacon. Since her graduation collection brought in both critical praise and commercial opportunity – she received the prestigious New Gen award from the British Fashion Council and Browns Focus bought the collection in 2009 – it looks like Fannie is planning to spend some time in her new hometown. Now stocked internationally in such prestigious stores as 10 Corso Como, Milan; Barneys, NYC; Harvey Nichols, Hong Kong and Curve, Los Angeles, London is proving a good headquarters from which to direct operations.

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The SS11 collection once again uses the amassed lengths of large link chain that has become something of a signature for Fannie. But, it’s easy to see that the collection draws on disparate and eclectic references to deliver its denouement. Medieval armour is certainly something that comes to mind when looking at elements based on chain mail or even the stunning neckpieces and glove using ancient scale armour concepts. But the collection also takes things in a trippy psychedelic direction; the folksy feel of some of the dangling forms reminiscent of the freewheeling 1960’s complemented with little geometric flashes of colour bringing a kaleidoscopic touch. And, of course, there’s also a dab of fetishism about it too, reinventing ideas taken from bondage garments and other accoutrements of erotica and reformulating them as fashion accessories.

And although it’s unlikely that Fannie’s robust accessories will blow off in a gust of wind, those who feel like travelling light this summer would invest wisely in acquiring one of her statement pieces: as we have already seen proven by numerous celebs, one only need the simplest of garments – if anything at all- to accompany Fannie’s dramatic pieces to appear very dressed up.

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