Opposite to Ermanno Scervino to me Sonia Rykiel isn’t a designer to gather looks directly from the runway and integrate them into my personal style. I very much appreciate her collections and especially her shows due to that enormous creativity that lies in every garment. Likewise her main collection has to be separated from her second one called Sonia by Sonia Rykiel. This last one indeed provides looks to directly wear them in an “ordinary fashionable” life…
Sonia started her knit label in 1968 by producing cozy knit sweater for pregnant women.
The Poor Boy Sweater made the cover of ELLE fashion magazine, and brought Rykiel fame; because of it, she was crowned “Queen of Knits” by the Americans in 1967.(Wikipedia)
Due to its tremendous success, very short time later, she designed another collection for “non-pregnant” women as well. Honestly, if I look at her drafts of the early 1970ies I am very impressed how fresh and up to date some of them still look in our days too. Currently we are having that ongoing seventies vibe in fashion so that Sonia’s first collection pieces could easily get combined with today’s fashion pieces in any event.
Lucky her, she started her label and instantly succeeded in having hit the target of women’s needs in those days! In order to that the label grew and became a very famous and especially unreplacable fashion brand until today.
Of course, the name “Sonia Rykiel” has been a fashion brand I surely knew even in the eighties when I was very excited about everything belonging to France – especially to its fashion. I was kind of France -addicted as a teen girl… But first time I clearly realized what kind of fashion and enterprise Sonia Rykiel was based on, was a few years ago when a portrait of her label and career was documented in TV. I remember that I was highly impressed by these strong and encouraged women of the Rykiel family running that business in such a likeable way. I could feel that family team spirit even through the TV screen…
What I love the most in her collection pieces (of her main collection) is this – let’s call it – “built in break”. I mean that one jacket, for example, is designed as if several very different, if not “opposite” pieces would be worn together combined to a very creative and particular style. So I take a lot of inspiration and encouragement out of her fashion shows, not necessarily to mimic or copy them but to get my own creativity process initiated.
Similar to Ermanno Scervino I also love the image of women Sonia Rykiel reflects in her shows:
Women are shown as women (- in earlier times even more than today but there is still this particular touch of femininity).
Ermanno Scervino presents his woman as a contemporary, elegant and feminine person being aware of her femininity and showing this in her style and attitude. Sonia Rykiel also lets women be women and feminine but with this particular very French twist – without me being able to explicitly explain what this is… if you look at her looks you can feel that Parisian vibe in it.
The woman of Sonia Rykiel is independent and modern, a little unconventional and bohemian as well. Characterized by modern, cool but still feminine vibes those looks of Sonia by Sonia Rykiel are strictly bodacious! Indeed I am thinking about to sew such a cool avant-garde overall or to mimic that style of this dark blue suit – really love it…!