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What it means to be Sunnei

Lola McCaughey

Milan-based duo Simone Rizzo and Loris Messina founded Sunnei in 2015 with the idea of exploring the connections between people and places. In their work, they strike a balance between tradition and innovation with pieces that are contemporary, playful and wearable.

For their Sumer 2024 runway show in Milan, guests gathered around a stage reminiscent of elementary school settings. Each audience member received a paddle to score the upcoming looks. This transformed a social media-like sense of judgement and ranking into a real-life experience, highlighting the subjectivity of fashion and the interactive relationship between brands and their consumers. It served as a reminder that external forces have an impact on our decisions and opinions.

The collection consisted of thirty pieces, each striking and simple. The opening look featured three black pieces with contrast stitching and structured finishes. It was a subtle show opener, perhaps intended to test how honest and authentic the audience was willing to be. The clean tailoring and shapes in subsequent looks paid tribute to Italy’s tradition of craftsmanship, with attention placed on leather, braiding and colour. This season, they also incorporated braided strapping, which incorporated scrap materials from the atelier. Sunnei’s iconic stripe-coated dresses, pants, bags and skirts created a sense of continuity.

Sunnei’s theatrical and bold approach underscored the subjectivity of fashion judgement and celebrated diverse opinions. When it feels like no one is listening, Sunnei reminds us that they certainly are.

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SEE ISSUE #06 HERE. The theme for this issue, Revelations, delves into the unfiltered aspects of life. It’s an appreciation and exploration of raw beauty, where authenticity reigns supreme; the unconventional is not just accepted but celebrated. In a world of manufactured perfection, this issue chooses to validate our quirks and idiosyncrasies. After all, they are what make us inimitable.

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