Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Discovering Pitti: CP Company

CP Company's exhibition space at Pitti Uomo. Image from Pitti.

After last February's change of ownership, with CP Company passing from Sportswear Company to Enzo Fusco's FGF Industry, the future for this Casuals favourite brand was far from clear. The new direction began not on the catwalks of Milan but in Florence. Participation at Pitti Uomo marks a milestone in the life of the brand as it presented its fascinating story at Fortezza de Basso's Sala Ottagonale alongside the new collection. For SS11, the focus is on the soul of the brand, it sees a return to experimentation. A casual concept generated and developed to seek innovative materials and technological advances to create a selection of iconic goggle jackets.

Two of the latest designs of that iconic jacket. Image from Pitti.

The new CP Company is firmly rooted in the great tradition of the iconic designer sportswear brand. Kicking off with outdoor work and military apparel, the SS11 collection develops materials and technological studies, with garment treatments that offer unique, inimitable aspects to give clothing a new, contemporary flavour without losing echoes of memory. Flax has been blended with nylon for a new techno look, using a special resin coating that conjures up memories of the oilskins used by seamen of yesteryear. Nylon has been completely transformed and evolved with metameric treatments that gives the fabric a colour changing effect. Inserts of cotton and other material add new dimensions, combining to create a balance and depth of colour, textured effects and various sheens. There is a special focus on a navy style, with a treatment that gives the fabric a slightly crumpled look, as if it had been consumed by sea salt and left to dry in the sun. The collection offers models with such authentic details and fabrics that the garments could be mistaken for real vintage.

A close up, detail shot I took of the Goggle jacket as the film plays on in the background.

The Italian clothing designer Massimo Osti (1944-2005) created groundbreaking fashion works during the 1980’s and 90’s by combining his revolutionary textile innovations and painting techniques, with functional ideas from mainly military clothing. The story of this iconic piece of outerwear began when the great Massimo Osti exclusively designed and produced the very first Goggle Jacket as a promotional piece for the competitors of Mille Miglia in 1988. Last October I was able to visually document the narrative of the jacket at the Past, Present, Future exhibition at the RCA. From the very first, special edition jacket to the special edition created in collaboration with Aitor Throup last year, C.P. Company’s journey was told through the different steps of this iconic item which, season after season, has been subject to continuous transformation and experimentation. For Aitor Throup the brand has not had the respect and attention that its iconic designs deserve but this exhibition changed my perceptions and understanding of the brand. I hope the new look CP Company continues on the path set by Massimo Osti, creating garments through experimentation and innovation.


joy said...

That orange color is most beautiful.


Tom said...

CP Company is my favourite brand. I can't afford it much these days though. Back in my working for Flannels days, I used to get a jacket every month!

Long live the 50% discount.

Syed said...

For the longest time I thought CP Company had something to do with CCP...not entirely sure why. I would love to wear that goggle jacket. Looks like something that would be at home in Howl's Moving Castle.

Style Salvage Steve said...

Joy: That jacket was my personal favourite too.
Tom: I wish everything came with a fifty per cent discount!
Syed: Ha, it is quite odd how our minds work sometimes! Yes, it is perfect for tackling Howl's Moving Castle.

Anonymous said...

I will be buying the Orange and Olive 3 pocket milles but not the biker version.

Freeking amazing.


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