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2009 June 22

Alessandro Dell'Acqua Without...Alessandro Dell'Acqua?

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(NEW YORK) Alessandro Dell'Acqua sent down some of the most memorable fur looks in Milan last season, but now, the lauded designer appears to be breaking with his own brand. Through his public relations firm, Dell'Acqua sent out a press release on Friday informing the press that the Men's Spring-Summer 2010 and women's pre-spring 2010 collections "will be produced produced without my approval, as I haven’t had the possibility to verify the conformity of the final product to the sketches I submitted to the company." (Full transcript below.)

The Dell'Acqua collections are distributed and produced by Cherry Grove, the corporation that acquired the brand and its trademarks in 2003.* Based in Emiglia, Italy, it once served as a longtime producer for Ferre and Fendi. Arpels' retail background includes a stint as director of retail development at Van Cleef & Arpels, the French jewelry firm founded by his family. 

"The brand which carries my name has always been consistent with my style but in this case, despite of their formal assurance, Cherry Grove, the company who produces and distributes the Alessandro Dell’Acqua women’s and men’s collections, decided to move forward without having me, the designer, check on the quality of the product," the designer continued in the statement. "I had rather not ask for your collaboration, so precious along all these years, but because of this imposed inability to guarantee the quality of the final product and in order to protect the other licensees of the brand, I have to detach myself from these two collections that have not been approved by me and that I don’t acknowledge as realization of my creations."

While Cherry Grove has not formally responded to Dell'Acqua's statement, fashion insiders wonder how much longer the tenuous relationship can hold. When Redwall, which owned Cherry Grove and was led by Claude Arpels, purchased the company, it intended to grow the business in the United States, which led to a store on Madison Avenue which was closed in December 2008.

Aside from the work on his own brand, Dell'Acqua also served as the designer for Itierre-owned knitwear company Malo until April of this year; from 2004-2008, he also oversaw the ready-to-wear collection at La Perla. A 46-year-old native of Naples, Dell'Acqua graduated from the Accademia di Belli Arti and began his career at age 23, when he was given an exclusive contract to design a line for Genny, where he worked alongside Gianni Versace.
ASHLEY BAKER

Milan, June 19th 2009

Dear All,

I would like to inform you that the Alessandro Dell’Acqua Men’s Spring-Summer 2010 and Women’s Pre-spring 2010 collections will be produced without my approval, as I haven’t had the possibility to verify the conformity of the final product to the sketches I submitted to the company.

The brand which carries my name has always been consistent with my style but in this case, despite of their formal assurance, Cherry Grove, the company who produces and distributes the Alessandro Dell’Acqua women’s and men’s collections, decided to move forward without having me, the designer, check on the quality of the product.

I believe that the involvement and agreement among all parts concerned with the brand, specially the designer who has been working for it with constant dedication since the very begininng, is a fundamental element under any circumstance, even the most problematic one.

I had rather not ask for your collaboration, so precious along all these years, but because of this imposed inability to guarantee the quality of the final product and in order to protect the other licensees of the brand, I have to detach myself from these two collections that have not been approved by me and that I don’t acknowledge as realization of my creations.

Best regards,

Alessandro Dell’Acqua

*This post has been updated to reflect the fact that Claude Arpels has sold his stake in Cherry Grove and is no longer affilliated with Alessandro Dell'Acqua. The Daily regrets the error.




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