ART HOUSE It’s of­fi­cial: lo­gos are out, crafts­man­ship is in. Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo is lead­ing the way with its con­tem­po­rary take on ar­ti­sanal pieces. By Clare Maclean.

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Last Oc­to­ber, Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo flew out one of its ar­ti­sans, Juri Cavallini, to launch the brand’s cus­tom-made-shoe con­cept in Australia. For a few days, Cavallini sat at a small tool-laden ta­ble while shop­pers watched him work. It was a smart move that ac­knowl­edged luxury’s thought­ful new di­rec­tion. Last year, global man­age­ment firm Bain & Com­pany pub­lished a re­port an­nounc­ing that logo fa­tigue was set­ting in among con­sumers. In­stead, the re­port ex­plained, in­creas­ingly fash­ion-savvy cus­tomers cared more about a brand’s her­itage, where its prod­ucts were made and how. This new mind­set went on to in­fil­trate the Spring/Sum­mer ’15 shows, where an em­pha­sis was placed on tra­di­tional crafts­man­ship, and cre­ative di­rec­tors at­tempted to an­swer the ques­tion: how do you har­ness the con­cept of “unique­ness” in a glob­alised, 21st-Cen­tury world?

It’s the fi­nal day of Mi­lan fash­ion week and I’m sit­ting in a room with Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo’s cre­ative direc­tor, Mas­si­m­il­iano Gior­netti, at the brand’s Mi­lan of­fice. This is merely the designer’s tem­po­rary head­quar­ters, his ac­tual home be­ing in Florence, also the home of the Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo brand. I men­tion this be­cause we are both cur­rently por­ing over a jacket from the new col­lec­tion that in­cor­po­rates weav­ing, an art Tus­cany has been fa­mous for since the Mid­dle Ages.

“I live in Santo Spir­ito on the left bank of Florence, which is the cen­tre of ar­ti­sanal tra­di­tion,” he says. “I still re­mem­ber 20 years ago when I ar­rived there af­ter my first year of uni­ver­sity in Venice. In the pi­azza, peo­ple still weave with straw and other hum­ble ma­te­ri­als from the coun­try­side.” Gior­netti hasn’t in­cor­po­rated straw into this par­tic­u­lar jacket, but has in­stead played with an un­ex­pected com­bi­na­tion. “We’ve taken snakeskin and cut it into a very fine, al­most thread, and wo­ven it with the cot­ton. It looks very sim­ple, but it’s not,” he notes.

It’s an ap­proach he’s also taken with the brand’s ac­ces­sories, the core of the Fer­rag­amo busi­ness. Most sig­nif­i­cantly, Gior­netti has cho­sen this sea­son to rein­vent the brand’s famed 1938 rain­bow wedges. “I was re­ally feel­ing the idea of re-ex­plor­ing it – and it also oc­curred to me that the

Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo Spring/ Sum­mer ’15

State­ment ac­ces­sories in­clude rein­vented wedges and fringed bags with Mu­rano glass han­dles

The fresh pal­ette fea­tures plenty of white and dove grey

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