Salone di Saloni
In this rapidly changing time with Covid-19 disrupting lives, calendars and daily activities, our hearts go out to the citizens of Italy and all coronavirus affected areas around the world. Stay home, stay safe, self-isolate and know that precaution will power us through this trying time. In memory of our unforgettable outing in Milan this time last year, we recount Saloni at Salone.
Milan is the legacy fashion and design capital, dotted with cosy haunts for ultimate collectibles. One such iconic furniture gallery among the winding cobbled streets of the Italian city, is Nilufar by Nina Yashar. Much like the idiosyncratic style of the owner (head wrapped in a beautiful scarf, body enveloped in layers of luxurious fabric and OTT earrings perfectly in place), her keen eye extends to the way she curates her gallery space dedicated to furniture and lighting.
There are modular tables made borrowing jewellery manufacturing techniques like ‘cold enamel’, art-deco arm chairs, and wall-lighting that Yashar compares to an artwork filling up a space with emotions. Transforming spaces is no new concept to the aesthete. So when Salone 2019 came around in April (the annual Milan furniture fair, where design stalwarts come together with buyers and experts from the industry), Saloni stood up to the challenge of a first its kind fashion brand takeover of the gallery. The result? Windows displayed with our sweetest dresses. As you walked to the corner of Via della Spiga, the gallery’s windows greeted you with animated Saloni dresses, almost humanised, and in contact with furniture and illustrations by artist and gallery owner, Jean Blanchaert.
The concept and installations put together by set designer Julia Wagner, invited viewers to experience objects personified and interacting together in a humorous way. Think dancing dresses amid a curtain of fabric, some even making their way to a chest of drawers.
The window-viewing was followed by cocktails at Chez Nina — a famous club in Milan, named after Nina Yashar and decorated by interior designer India Mahdavi. The evening celebrated Saloni’s first event in the city, part of a larger series of events in Europe that started with us creating an immersive installation at department store Le Bon Marché, Paris in March. Titled the ‘Colour Walk’, our prints came to life in the form of colourful draped fabrics to create a kaleidoscopic, trompe l’oeil effect, tying right into Saloni’s design philosophy of creating cross-generational dresses that allow women to experience the unabashed joy of living life in technicolor.