Ungaro relaunches women’s ready-to-wear with rejuvenated style
Ungaro womenswear is back in the limelight. The Parisian luxury label, owned since 2005 by Aimz Acquisition, the investment fund of US-Pakistani businessman Asim Abdullah, has not graced the catwalks since the departure of Creative Director Marco Colagrossi last year, and it is now relaunching its womenswear, injecting it with youth and a breath of fresh air, with a focus on knitwear.
Ungaro took the opportunity of the Paris Men's Fashion Week to present at its avenue Montaigne showroom, alongside the men's collection, a sixty-item womenswear collection created by its in-house design studio, supported by a knitwear specialist from one of Ungaro’s long-standing Italian suppliers.
“It’s a low-key relaunch, introducing a collection chiefly focused on knitwear, featuring cool, highly wearable items. We are back with a directional line, which is totally Ungaro, priced between €600 and €1,300,” General Manager Marie Fournier explained to FashionNetwork.com.
The design team took a deep dive into the maison’s archives, researching haute couture creations as well as Ungaro Ter, the label's third line, launched by Emanuel Ungaro in the 1980s alongside the main line and the Ungaro Solo Donna line.
The label’s iconic big white polka dots on a black background are now back on flared mini dresses in knitted viscose, or on ultra-soft bolero jackets in eco-fur, as well as on hoodies with tubular hem and cuffs in striped mohair, a study in contrasting geometric patterns. A large stylised-rose motif pops up on cardigans and dresses, while a leopard print pattern is used for short crew-necked dresses, crop tops and slit skirts.
Emanuel Ungaro was fond of black bejewelled dresses, and the theme is riffed on printed patterns, small quilted jackets and knitted dresses decorated with a pearl brooch. Ungaro’s new women's wardrobe also includes an array of long, macramé-style openwork dresses in red or black, and knitted dresses and sweaters in white mohair, the shoulder embellished with a crêpe de Chine ruche.
The collection is sure to be a hit with buyers, and is rounded off by zipped cardigans, black trousers, printed trousers, cute mohair sweaters in bright colours such as fuchsia, green and pink, wrap-front jumpers, bare-back tops and hooded parkas.
It has been a tough year for Ungaro, and this collection is a way of testing the market, which remains volatile, taking a new direction which could indeed be the right way forward for ready-to-wear.
Meanwhile, Ungaro’s menswear is still licensed to Alea Fashion Industries, and continues to grow. Philippe Paubert was first called on by Emanuel Ungaro to design the men’s collections in 1993, and he has been back in charge since 2016. Paubert’s is a constant, subtle reinterpretation of the label's heritage, spawning collections at once sophisticated and casual, distinctive for their fine fabrics, soft builds and, like womenswear, a strong focus on knitwear.
The mood is a touch vintage, hence the herringbone overcoat and velvet jackets, with an emphasis on 3D-textured effects and printed and jacquard fabrics with geometric patterns. The colour palette is muted, almost autumnal. Freedom of movement is another distinctive feature, notably thanks to jersey jackets and lightweight velvet.
On the accessories side, Ungaro has terminated its collaboration with Roy Luwolt and Malone Souliers, and has signed a new licence deal for small leather goods with Milano Fashion srl.
Ungaro's other licenses include fragrances with Ferragamo Perfumes, scarves with Italian silk specialist Ratti, and a home furniture line with Belgian supplier JNL.
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